Karunanidhi burial: 2 dead, 33 injured in stampede at Rajaji Hall where Kalaignar’s mortal remains were kept for public

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In a tragic incident in Chennai hours before the burial of M Karunanidhi, at least two people were reported dead and as many as 33 others were injured in a stampede at Rajaji Hall, where the mortal remains of the DMK patriarch were kept for public homage. The 94-year-old passed away in the citys Kauvery Hospital after a brief illness on Tuesday. The stampede occurred when the police allowed public to move inside the hall to pay homage to the departed leader in batches. While people were moving in to have the last glimpse of the leader, suddenly there was a rush after which many people fell. Those who were behind them also fell on them. After the incident, injured were shifted to Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, where two patients, a man and a woman died. While the woman was identified as 60-year old Shenbagam, the man is yet to be identified. The funeral procession of the late leader will begin at 4 pm today. He will be laid to rest at Marina beach near the Anna memorial, the party said in a statement. It said that the procession would start from Rajaji Hall, where his mortal remains are kept and proceed through Sivananda Road and Thanthai Periyar Road to reach Anna Square. Karunanidhi would be buried near the mausoleum of former Chief Minister and his mentor C N Annadurai on the sands of Marina, it said. Party supporters and the public are requested to stay calm during the procession and pay their respects to the unparalleled leader, the statement added.