In a shocking incident, two devotees reportedly died after consuming the prasadam or offering from the local temple in Mettupalayam on Thursday. According to The New Indian Express, over 30 others have been hospitalised.
According to the report, the devotees complained of stomach pain and sickness soon after consuming the food.
Police sources said that two women did not respond to the treatment at Mettupalayam general hospital and died.
According to the Times of India, the two women were daily wage labourers, identified as Savithri and Loganayaki. Loganayaki's siblings have also been admitted to the hospital and are undergoing treatment.
The newspaper also reports that the devotees had come to the temple for the 'Poochattu Vizha’ organised on Tuesday. Over 40 devotees had reportedly consumed the prasadam and attended the festival where special pujas were performed earlier in the day.
The devotees were served prasadam, which included flattened rice and puffed rice along with sugar and ghee.
Speaking to ToI, police said that the doctors had found that the ghee used to make the prasadam was not fit for consumption. It was to be used only for the purpose of lighting lamps and not cooking.
“Doctors told us that the ghee is the main reason for the devotees developing vomiting and diarrhoea. It is not suitable for consumption. The temple authorities mistakenly used the ghee with prasadam and some employees of the temple also developed similar symptoms and are being treated at the hospital,” said Chennakesavan, Inspector of Police, Mettupalayam to ToI.