Several people were injured when a stage set up for Janata Dal (United) leader Chandrika Rai's election campaign rally collapsed on Thursday in Bihar's Saran district. The stage gave way due to overcrowding; no serious injuries were reported.
The incident took place in Sonpur assembly constituency shortly after Mr Rai filed his nomination papers for the upcoming assembly polls.
A huge number of Mr Rai's supporters took part in the rally. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy was also present on the stage.
After Mr Rudy delivered his speech, it was Mr Rai's turn. Before he began speaking, several people climbed the stage to garland the JD(U) leader. Soon after, the crowded platform gave way.
Mr Rai is the father-in-law of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tej Pratap Yadav, the eldest son of RJD chief Lalu Prasad. Mr Yadav married his daughter Aishwarya in 2018, although they are now in the midst of divorce proceedings. A minister in past RJD governments, Mr Rai quit the party in August to join JDU. There have been reports that his daughter, Ms Rai, could also enter the electoral fray soon.
On Thursday, no COVID-19 protocols were followed at the event, attended by hundreds of people. No social distancing was observed - neither among the leaders present on the stage nor off it. Few wore masks. Even policemen could be seen without having taken any such precautions.
Bihar has till now recorded over two lakh COVID-19 positive cases and nearly 1,000 deaths due to the disease. The state votes between October 28 and November 7.