COVID 19 second wave has led to a pile of dead bodies making way to crematoriums, Amid this, there are complaints that crematorium staff is overcharging in hefty amounts. To address this,
Bengaluru Civic body on Friday evening issued a circular announcing appointment of 24 nodal officers for 12 crematoriums that are functional across the city. The move came in an attempt to address complaints of crematorium staff charging unduly. These officers are divided into two shifts, 12-hour each. "Officers will interchange their shifts or they can perform their duties in either of the shifts," an official revealed.
Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) issued a circular informing of the new development.
"With the appointment of nodal officers, the BBMP can directly monitor what and where exactly the problem lies. The nodal officers have been asked to submit reports on the happenings of designated crematoriums allotted to these officers. These officers will report directly to Chief Commissioner of the Bengaluru civic body, Gaurav Gupta," the circular stated.
Bengaluru city with a more than a crore population has 12 electrical crematoriums in total with two furnaces each that are operated by the Bengaluru civic body. These crematoriums are situated in eight divisions of the city: Medi Agrahara and Hebbal-Kempapura of Yelahanka division, Kudlu of Bommanahalli, Panathur of Mahadevapura, Kallahalli in East division, Harishchndra Ghat and Mysuru Road of West division, Kengeri, Sumanahalli and Peenya of Rajarajeshwari Nagar division and Banashankari and Wilson Garden of Southern division have been allowed to cremate dead both Covid and non-Covid bodies.
There has been an evident spike in the number of cremations at these crematoriums. Where the number used to be 10-12 bodies on a daily average prior to Covid 2020, each crematorium is now doing 40 cremations per day during the ongoing second wave of COVID 19, the staff says. This has led to the staff working round the clock.
Relatives of the deceased have alleged that crematoriums are charging as much as Rs. 50,000 to perform the last rites of a body. This is the reason why the B'luru Civic body has appointed nodal officers across two shifts and set up two makeshift crematoriums on the outskirts of the city.
Apart from this, kin of the dead is also allowed to perform rites in a land owned by them. Despite these measures, dead bodies continue to pile up in front of all crematoriums in the city.
Bengaluru’s active cases count is higher than all but four states - Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Kerala. Among all active cases in Karnataka, Bengaluru accounts for 70%. Karnataka registered 25,795 new Covid-19 infections and 123 related fatalities on Thursday. Of these, 15,244 new cases and 68 deaths were reported from Bengaluru Urban alone.
(With IANS Inputs)