Chennai: A day after four persons including two women died of suffocation while waiting in the long queue for darshan of Lord Athi Varadar in Kanchipuram, a 72-year-old man from Chennai died of cardiac arrest, on Friday.
The victim, Arumugam of Virugambakkam, complained of breathlessness as he was waiting in the darshan queue. He was immediately taken to the temporary medical centre on the temple premises and administered first aid. The doctor in the medical centre also referred him to the Kancheepuram Government Hospital, but Armugam died after admission at the hospital, taking the death toll to five.
The 47-day event, which comes once in 40 years, has attracted thousands of people from across the country in the past 18 days, and the rush increased on Thursday as it was considered auspicious for the deity. Nearly 1.75 lakh people from all over the country visited the temple, even as four devotees including two women were suffocated to death.
The deceased have been identified as Anandavel (50) from Salem, Narayani (55) from Avadi in Chennai, Gangalakshmi (60) from Guntur in Andhra Pradesh and Nataraj (61) from Triplicane in Chennai. Though eyewitnesses said the four died of suffocation, the Kanchipuram district administration refuted the allegations saying they could have suffered cardiac arrests.