Kesinga: Cases of COVID-19 victims being denied a decent cremation are being reported from across the state. A similar case was reported Thursday from Kesinga block in Kalahandi district.
A COVID-19 patient breathed his last at Sahajpati village under Belakhandi panchayat in Kesinga block Wednesday night. Neither the family members nor the neighbours came forward to perform the last rites of the deceased.
At around 1:30 am, when the deceased’s son Pradeep Choudhary took the matter up with block development officer (BDO) Prafulla Kumar Adu, he requested Manoj Kumar Pattanayak, head of Swargadwar Seva Sangathan to do the needful.
Swargadwar Seva Sangathan is a social organisation formed during this second wave of the pandemic to help perform last rites of bodies of COVID-19 victims abandoned or deserted by family members.
Manoj along with his associates including Sajjan Kumar Agrawal, Mitrasen Bhoi, Saroj Sahu, Manoj Kumar Sarangi and others reached the village Thursday morning. In presence of Kesinga tehsildar Jyotirmay Kar, Palam outpost ASI Asit Kumar Panda, the members took the body out of the house, placed it on a bier and carried it to a riverside in the village where the deceased’s last rites were formed while following COVID-19 protocols.
At a time when the fear of contracting the virus has gripped the people so much so that they even feel reluctant to do the last rites rituals of their near and dear ones, Swargadwar Seva Sangathan members are receiving accolades for going out of their ways to ensure a decent cremation for coronavirus victims.