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Crematorium chaos: BBMP now reserves 7 of its 12 units for Covid bodies

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Civic marshals tasked with ensuring that only Covid helpline-referred bodies are accepted at the 7 crematoriums

Alongside, Karnataka govt caps attendees at funerals/cremations at 5, subject to observing Covid protocol

BENGALURU:

Considering the huge rush and chaos outside crematoriums in Bengaluru, BBMP has rolled back its previous order whereby it had allowed cremation of Covid-19 victims’ bodies in all its 12 crematoriums.

As per Sunday’s fresh diktat, BBMP has permitted cremation of Covid bodies at seven of its crematoriums, while the other five will cater to non-Covid cremations.

The state government too has withdrawn its previous order allowing up to 20 people to attend cremations. Revenue Department Principal Secretary N Manjunatha Prasad has issued a modified order capping the number of people attending funerals/cremations at 5, with the proviso that they have to observe Covid-appropriate behaviour.

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‘Walk-in’ Covid bodies for other 5 units

The BBMP order issued by Joint Commissioner (SWM) Sarfraz Khan has tasked civic marshals with keeping a vigil at the seven Covid-designated crematoriums to ensure that only Covid helpline-referred bodies brought in RFID-enabled hearses are accepted for cremation. The seven crematoriums are at Medi Agrahara, Kudlu, Panathur, Kengeri, Summanahalli, Peenya and Banashankari.

These seven crematoriums will not take any non-Covid or walk-in Covid bodies not referred to by the BBMP helpline. However, these non-Covid and walk-in Covid bodies shall be sent to the remaining 5 crematoriums until further orders, and also to TR Mills and Tavarekere for open cremation.

No online bookings

Meanwhile, the IT cell has been directed to disable the online booking portal for these seven Covid-exclusive crematoriums so that general online booking and subsequent confusion and endless waiting in the crematorium is avoided.

Further, the marshals shall ensure that all the operators in all the crematoriums wear PPE kits, the photos of which shall be shared every day in morning in the group by the Chief Marshal. The marshals shall not leave the crematorium till the last of the bodies are cremated for the day, the order reads.

Police help sought

The order also directs Zonal Commissioners to request the respective DCPs for police personnel to be present in the crematoriums to keep a check on crowding of people and vehicles, and also to monitor social distancing and wearing of masks.

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