At least 35 people were killed and 16 were injured after the roof of a stepwell collapsed in central India, a local government official said on Friday.
The incident occurred as devotees gathered at a temple in Indore to celebrate the Hindu festival of Ram Navami on Thursday, officials said.
"We have rescued 18 people, 35 have been found dead and 16 are injured," Ilayaraja T, a top local government official, said.
At least 75 army and rescue personnel worked through the day to remove debris, using ropes and ladders to pull out people who had fallen into the well, local media reported.
Narottam Mishra, Madhya Pradesh state home minister, told reporters an investigation had been launched into the mishap and the families of the dead would be compensated.
Police official Manish Kapooriya said rescue efforts were continuing and that the injured were moved to government hospitals for treatment.
Television footage showed emergency workers using ropes and ladders to reach those trapped in the well in Madhya Pradesh state.
Other videos showed the caved-in floor and mangled steel bars, and policemen using ropes to seal the area.
Temples across India were brimming with devotees on the occasion of Ram Navami, the birthday of the Hindu deity Lord Ram. (Reuters/AFP)
Last updated: 2023-03-31 HKT 11:42