Dead bodies of COVID-19 patients have to be cremated irrespective of religion, says BMC
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UPDATE: BMC has withdrawn the circular.

Amidst the deadly coronavirus pandemic which has rocked the world, claiming 34,019 lives and infecting 724,748 people globally, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Monday said that all the dead bodies of COVID-19 patients should be cremated at the nearest crematorium irrespective of their religion and the funeral should not involve more than 5 people.

The BMC noted that the rituals which involve touching the body should be avoided. The Corporation also said that burying the body will continue the risk of the virus in the future. Hence, all the COVID-19 dead bodies should be cremated to avoid transmission chances in the community.

"All the dead bodies of COVID-19 patients should be cremated at the nearest crematorium irrespective of religion. The rituals involving touching the body should be avoided. This is done in respect of Community leader who have brought to my notice that existing burial grounds are in highly dense locality with high chances of contamination of dense community/ residential arens nearby. Further prodcedure of packaging the body in plastic bag and burying same prevents easy decomposition and risk continuing the virus for future spread. Hence, all the COVID-19 dead bodies should be cremated to avoid transmission chances in the community. Burial should not be allowed. it should be communicated to local leaders by Asst. Commissioners. The funeral should not involve more than 5 people," said the Municipal Commissioner.

Adding that the cemetery staff should cremate the bodies using protective equipment like masks and gloves, the Municipal Commissioner added that the hospital authority should inform to the local police station and then hand over the body.

Meanwhile, 12 new coronavirus positive cases were reported in Maharashtra- 5 in Pune, 3 in Mumbai, 2 in Nagpur, 1 in Kolhapur, 1 in Nashik and the total number of coronavirus cases in the state rose to 215, while the total death toll in the state has now risen to 9.

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