The grand Beating the Retreat ceremony at the India -Pakistan border at the Attari check post turned into a tragedy for a family from Kerala on Thursday. About an hour before the ceremony, a portion of the under -construction gallery fell, and an iron rod supporting it hit a nine -year -old girl, grievously injuring her. “She was immediately provided medical assistance.
Unfortunately, she couldn’t be saved,” said Border Security Force Deputy Inspector -General RS Kataria.
Two vendors standing nearby also sustained minor injuries.
The girl, Nandna, was accompanied by her parents, who were part of a group of tourists from Kerala who had come to Attari to witness the flag -lowering ceremony. Close to 10,000 tourists throng the galleries right next to the Pakistan border every day to witness the ceremony. During the peak tourist season, this number can go up to 15,000 daily.
Senior government officials said that the portion next to the Swarna Jayanti gate, which was being constructed, collapsed at around 4.20pm, after a JCB machine accidentally hit it. The girl, who was passing by, was hit by an iron pipe that gave way. Government officials said luckily more people were not hurt. The new galleries are being added to manage the increasing rush for the extremely popular ceremony. “We have ordered an inquiry and will get a report in three days,” a senior government official said.
“We will fix responsibility for the accident once we get all the details,” he added.