Bengaluru, Jun 30, 2020: The Karnataka government on Tuesday disbanded a field team involved in burials of bodies of Covid-19 patients in Ballari district after videos emerged of disrespectful handling of the bodies.
The government also apologised to the families of the dead.
Congress leader D K Shivakumar posted a video which allegedly showed members of a field team dumping bodies of Covid-19 patients in an open pit.
The government acted quickly. Deputy Commissioner and District magistrate S S Nakul in a statement said an enquiry was ordered under Additional Deputy Commissioner and it was found that the video belongs to Ballari and companies of burial of eight people who succumbed to Covid-19.
“The video shows that protocols/SOP to be followed for burial (body bags, lining etc.) have been strictly followed. However, District Administration is deeply upset and sorrowful at the manner in which the remains of the deceased were handled…. The entire field team involved has been disbanded and will be replaced by a new team trained by the HoD, Forensics, VIMS.” Nakukl said.
“The District Administration regrets the incident and hereby unconditionally apologises to the families of the departed in particular and the people of Ballari in general,” Nakul said.
Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa also condemned the way bodies were handled.
“Behaviour of staff during the funeral of #COVID19 infected people in Ballari district is very inhuman & very painful. I request the staff, let’s realize that there is no greater religion than humanity: Karnataka,” the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) tweeted.
Meanwhile, Karnataka reported 947 new Covid-19 cases including 503 from Bengaluru Urban, taking Karnataka’s tally to 15,242. There were 20 casualties today, raing the death toll in the pandemic to 246, the state health department said.