Set up makeshift crematoriums and designate more burial grounds for COVID victims’ dignity

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With this second wave,  the spectre of COVID has become even more frightening for  all of us. In this second wave, the catastrophic spike in cases is coupled with a high death toll. Crematoriums and burial grounds are struggling to keep up, as casualties pile up.

Gentlemen, What will it take for you to finally wake up? Why are crematoriums, morgues not considered as a priority in your infrastructure and health plans? How many more pandemics do you need to understand the reality and act?

Last year “Times Now” kept flashing those gory visuals for days and nights. I was interviewed live on a primetime news discussion to share that the situation of non-functional Morgue and crematoriums in Mumbai was pathetic even before Covid 19 attacked us. That it was a nightmare with COVID deaths was therefore no surprise.

Yet! Neither did the Chief Minister of Maharashtra pay attention nor did you at the Centre. The tender for the reconstruction of a new morgue at St Georges Hospital  is yet to be floated. It's only been FOUR years!!!!

As a 65-year-old responsible citizen who has been campaigning for dignity for the dead, I have been running from pillar to post trying to get the Maharashtra  government to wake up .I have been fighting for a functional crematorium and morgue in Mumbai so that every citizen who ends up there can have a semblance of dignity in death.

Sirs, the crisis today is much bigger than one city. It is all over India. With these COVID deaths, there are 3 issues: dignity for the dead, safety of the living, and a colossal logistics issue. 

  1. We are seeing a shortage of crematoriums and burial grounds. 
    As a result the dead, both COVID and non-COVID victims, and their loved ones have to wait long hours for the last rites. The overcrowding and long wait could turn these very locations into virus hotspots. 
  2. There is also the question of the safety of crematorium and burial ground workers. Times Now reported that many of these men don’t even have Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) gear on. They are getting exposed to COVID with every victim they come in close contact with

Sign my petition urging the Government of India to direct all states to set up makeshift electric crematoriums and designate more areas for burials on a priority basis. 

Nobody knows what lies ahead for any of us. One of the few things we can control is the way we give those who COVID snatches away a dignified funeral. 

Few people these days speak up for the dignity of the living. Fewer people speak up for the dignity of the dead. Please lend your voice to this cause by signing my petition. When thousands of people do so, we will be making it our collective petition. We will have a greater chance of being heard by the authorities.

#DignityInDeathPart3