With only one hearse currently serving Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad, the Swarajya NGO has called for the provision of at least 15 additional hearses in the area. The lack of sufficient vehicles has resulted in significant waiting times for families handling deceased loved ones.
Dr Dhananjay Jadhav, the General Secretary of Swarajya NGO, emphasised the pressing need for improved funeral services in light of the growing population in Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad. He issued a demand, stating, "For a city like Pune with a population of over 50 lakhs, Pune Municipal Corporation has just one only hearse of PMPML. Due to this, the relatives of the deceased have to wait. PMPML should make extra hearses available. Failure to comply within 8 days will result in us bringing the funeral procession to the office."
This call for action was officially communicated at the PMPML office, with the presence of Swarajya Party's state executive members, including Ganesh Sonawane, Dadarao Bobde, Vikram Kadam, Rohit Shinde, and Ajit Babalsure. The plea underscores the urgency of addressing the current inadequacy in funeral transportation services to meet the needs of the community effectively.
Residents speak up
While speaking to FPJ, one resident from Pune, Renuka Deshmukh said, "It's disheartening to see families waiting for hours due to the shortage of hearses. We need more options for a city of this size."
Rajesh Patil from Pimpri added, "The current situation is causing distress for grieving families. Adding more hearses is a necessity for a smooth and timely funeral process."
Suman Sharma from Chinchwad stressed, "PMPML needs to act urgently to address this issue. Families going through a tough time should not be subjected to prolonged waiting periods."
Amit from commented, "I've witnessed the challenges firsthand. The authorities must step up and provide the necessary resources to ensure a dignified farewell for the departed."
Shruti Joshi from Pimpri-Chinchwad stated, "Increasing the number of hearses is a basic necessity. Let's hope the authorities take quick action to alleviate the suffering of grieving families."
An official from PMPML stated that currently, one hearse is allocated to Pune, and another hearse is dedicated to the Pimpri-Chinchwad area. However, there are plans in motion to expand and enhance the funeral service to cater to the growing demand in the region, he added.