Chennai doctor who died from COVID-19 denied burial by locals

Chennai doctor who died from COVID-19 denied burial by locals

CHENNAI: Dr. Simon, who served as Managing Director of New Hope Hospital in Chennai, died of coronavirus.

But when his friends tried to give him a decent burial they were attacked and denied burial by locals with sticks. The ambulance was damaged and the family members were attacked.

Later at night, amid full police protection the burial was carried out.

“With the help of two hospital staff, I dug a space and buried my close friend by pushing in mud with my own hands. He was a doctor, a philanthropist and the Managing Director of a hospital. He didn't deserve this end,” Dr Pradeep, a friend of the deceased said.

In another instance a doctor from Meghalaya who died from coronavirus could not be cremated at the electric crematorium, Jhalupara as locals opposed the move fearing spread of the virus to residential areas and TB Hospital nearby. He was later buried at Presbyterian Church Riatsamthiah at Lawmali.

Cremation of bodies of people dying from coronavirus is posing a challenge as in many places either they were attacked and denied burial or to perform last rites.

Three instances have come out where families in Punjab have refused to perform last rites of family members who have died of coronavirus infection.

In once such recent incident on April 5, the last rites of a woman were performed by officials in Ludhiana city.

In another case since the entire family has been in quarantine, revenue staff had to take care of the last rituals.

In another incident that took place in Amritsar, villagers refused place for cremation of Padma Shri Nirmal Singh Khalsa, former Hazoori Raagi of the Golden Temple.

Meanwhile, weddings, celebrations, parties, and social get-togethers are being postponed due to the lockdown and the Corona scare but now the post-death rituals are also being put off. A family in a village of Ballia has postponed the last rituals of their mother to maintain social distancing.

Premchand Gupta, Motichand Gupta and Lakhichand Gupta in Amrit Pali village in Dubahad area of Ballia have postponed the ‘Brahmbhoj’ and ‘tehravi’ of their mother who died recently.

“These rituals are very important but, in these times, we decided to put them off. Even the pandits said that it would be better to hold the rituals at a later date because even our close relatives would not have been able to attend the same. Besides, social distancing is also important. We will hold the rituals when the lockdown is lifted,” said Premchand Gupta.

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