Dirty politics continues as dead bodies pile-up in mortuaries

new delhi/GURUGRAM: Amid allegations and counter allegations over pile-ups of bodies at various mortuaries and delay in disposal of bodies caused by non-functioning furnaces at cremation centres, politics over COVID-19 deaths in the city is not going to end.

The opposition parties are making alleging that the State government is hiding actual data of Corona deaths while their hospitals are flooded with bodies. Opposition councilors in BJP-ruled North Corporation claim Corporation's apathy for unprecedented delay in disposing of the bodies in a time bound manner.

The Corporation sources, however, claim tussle between parties is creating panic over death toll and the entire crisis must be investigated by the top brass of concerned authorities.

"Nigambodh Ghat has a fix capacity to dispose of bodies whether COVID or non-COVID period. If a body comes from hospital, the cremation authority checks death report of the concerned hospital. During the COVID-19 period, the cremation authority must go through death reports before declaring that the body creamed was Corona positive.

"During these days of crisis, instead of making any announcement, the authorities must go through due procedure. Here, senior authorities must look into the matter as it will only create confusion in society. The political parties, instead of making allegations over death toll, should suggest way to tackle the crisis," said sources.

"Due to apathy of the civic body, four out of six pyres at CNG crematorium are non-functional and now when issue is highlighted, their (civic body) failure has come in public domain. And the decision to allow use of wood for cremation is dangerous as it will cause infection among deceased's relatives, priests and staff deputed at cremation site hence we oppose any such move," said Surjit Panwar, leader of opposition in North MCD.

'No refusal or queue or pending bodies at any of the crematoriums'

The SDMC, however, said that the corporations were using only CNG furnaces to dispose of the dead bodies of COVID positive patients. The three CNG operated furnaces are available at Nigam Bodhghat Crematorium that could dispose of 18 bodies every day. Four CNG furnaces are available at Punjabi Bagh cremation ground that could dispose of 24 bodies every day.

In addition to these facilities, the bodies were also being disposed of at the burial grounds at Bahadurshah Zafar Marg, Mangolpuri, Madanpur Khadar and Mangolpuri Christian Burial Ground. There was no refusal or queue or pending bodies at any of the crematoriums or burial grounds.

Now, keeping in view of the increasing numbers of Corona positive cases, a decision was taken by the all three corporations to allow the cremation on wood pyres also at Punjabi Bagh, Nigam Bodh Ghat, Panchkuiyan Road, Karkardooma cremation gorunds and electric cremation at Lodhi Road Crematorium with the capacity of about 20-22; 15-16; 8-10; 6-8 and 5-6 respectively.

The cremation facilities are available between 7 am to 10 pm and due to this increased facilities, the Corporations increased the disposal capacity of crimination to 95-100 bodies per day from earlier capacity of 45 bodies per day. As per above facts, all the three corporation are able to dispose of about 95-100 bodies per day.

Meanwhile in Gurugram, officials of the Gurugram mortuary department said that there have been 20 such cases where bodies were found to be positive with COVID-19. Even though these deaths were caused in Gurugram, these figures have been registered by the Health department non-residents of Gurugram.

The Health department however has not mentioned how many non-residents have

died due to COVID-19 in Gurugram.

"To claim that we are hiding the figures of death would be an incorrect assessment. A large number of patients of COVID-19 patients have come to Gurugram for treatment who could not be saved. There were also some migrant workers who died and were found to be positive with COVID-19. We have informed about their death to the states," said a senior official from the district Health department.

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