PATNA (India) - AT LEAST 10 people died in a stampede at a temple in the eastern Indian state of Bihar where tens of thousands of devotees had gathered for an annual Hindu festival, police said on Sunday.

Another 15 people were injured in the stampede which occurred late Saturday outside a temple in Banka district, some 200 km from state capital of Patna, senior police officer P.K. Thakur said.

The victims had gathered to witness the sacrifice of goats in line with Hindu religious traditions, Mr Thakur said, adding 40,000 devotees had thronged the temple at the time of the stampede.

Four women were among those killed.

Religious gatherings are a part of daily life in India and people across the entire social spectrum participate regularly.

10 die in temple stampede