HYDERABAD, India (AP) — Tens of thousands of asthma sufferers have mobbed a southern Indian stadium to swallow live sardines smeared with a yellow herbal paste they believe will cure their breathing problems.

Despite doctors’ criticism, the Goud family has drawn throngs of people for years with its secret fish and herbal formula it says it received from a Hindu saint about 170 years ago.

Hyderabad police say a man died of a heart attack and several others sought medical attention for breathing difficulty after waiting for hours. Police say the stadium was unprepared to deal with the 70,000 people who rushed the gates today.

The family offers the treatment annually on a day chosen by astrologers.

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