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Overflowing Crematoriums, Discrepancy In COVID Death Figures Plague MP, Gujarat

A crematorium in Bhopal recorded 37 deaths on Monday while the state health bulletin reported 37 deaths in the entire state. 

The second wave of Coronavirus has swept the country with almost every state’s health machinery struggling to keep up. Troubling visuals have come out from different parts of the country. Apart from the worst-hit state of Maharashtra, states like Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat are also in dire condition. People and local media have been complaining about the shortage of Remdesivir, under-reporting of deaths, and an overflowing of crematoriums for funerals, including eight to nine hours of waiting time before the funeral.

India coronavirus
There has been a steep rise in COVID-19 deaths amidst the second wave.

MP recorded almost 9000 cases and 40 deaths in the past 24 hours. The total cases now stand at 3,53,632 with over 43,000 active cases, while the total death toll has gone up to 4261. However, the claim of recording the correct number of deaths by the state is disputed with people on the ground. According to them, there’s a severe inconsistency in the deaths reported by the state. A crematorium in Bhopal recorded 37 deaths on Monday while the state health bulletin reported 37 deaths in the entire state. This is not the first time that such discrepancies are being noticed in Madhya Pradesh’s death toll. As per a News18 report, the death figures for the last five days in MP were also found inconsistent.

On April 8, a total of 41 Covid bodies were cremated in Bhopal under COVID-19 protocols. The medical bulletin of the day reported just 27 deaths in the entire state. On April 9, 35 bodies were cremated in Bhopal but the government data for the entire state showed 23 Covid related deaths. The report said that on April 10, 56 bodies were cremated in Bhopal, but the government data claimed 24 people died due to coronavirus in the state. Similarly, on April 11, 68 bodies were cremated in the city, and the government reported a total of 24 deaths in the state. 

“The government has no intention of hiding the death count, we will not get any award by doing so.”

MP MEDICAL EDUCATION MINISTER VISHWAS SARANG

Worryingly, there’s a similar picture emerging from Gujarat. Local press, journalists, and even the judiciary have been tirelessly highlighting the distressing situation in the state and the State Government’s apathy. In Surat, crematoriums have been overflowing and are having to bury bodies three to four times their original capacity. Before the pandemic, Surat’s Ramnath Crematorium and Kurukshetra Crematorium were used to receiving 20 bodies on an average. Now, the number has gone up to 80. In Ashwini Kumar crematorium, Surat’s biggest is receiving around 110 bodies daily instead of the pre-pandemic capacity of 30.

Also Read: Gujarati Daily Publishes Phone Number of BJP Leader On Front Page After CM Evades Question Over How He Arranged Remdesivir Stock Amid Shortage In State

Such is the crisis that crematoriums are being forced to expand their boundaries to accommodate the bodies and the closed ones are being forced to reopen, even though they don’t have furnaces. Elsewhere, in Ahmedabad, Vadodara, and Rajkot, lack of mortuary vans and long queues of eight to nine hours for cremation were reported. 

Gujarat recorded 6021 cases on Tuesday, its highest one day spike with 55 deaths.

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