No Covid funerals for two straight days at East Delhi crematoriums

For the first time in nearly two months, no bodies were cremated or buried as per Covid protocols for 2 consecutive days — Saturday and Sunday— in Delhi’s East Delhi Municipal Corporation.

There are 164 spaces for cremation and two burial grounds in the jurisdiction of East MCD.

The cremation grounds of East Delhi had seen a peak of 100 Covid-19 funerals on May 1, the highest ever recorded. Over 50 bodies came to their crematoria daily in the last two weeks of April and first week of May.

Mayor of East MCD Nirmal Jain said that for the past two days no last rites of Covid patients were held in his jurisdiction. “We are hopeful that the situation will continue to remain under control and the corporation is upgrading all its hospitals in case there is a third wave.”

In the North and South MCDs on Sunday, fifteen and ten Covid cremations were conducted respectively, according to the data of the three corporations— East, North and South — that manage the crematoriums and graveyards in the city.

On Saturday, there were 15 Covid funerals in North MCD and 24 in South.

Currently, over 1,184 spaces are reserved at 28 sites of MCDs for last rites as per Covid protocols.

The civic bodies carry out Covid protocol cremations with a slew of precautions mandated by the health ministry to minimise the risk of the infection spreading. This applies for deaths in which test results are awaited or not done, but hospitals have mandated to follow covid protocol.

A senior official of the Civic body said the last week of April was tough as “we did over 650 covid-19 funerals for eight days in a row, starting from April 24”.

The data shows that the period between April 22 to May 7 saw more than half of the deaths in these two months.

On April 29 alone, 717 bodies came to the cremation grounds of Delhi for last rites as per covid-19 protocol, which means around 30 bodies every hour.

This was also the time when bodies were kept in queue or burnt by making arrangements in parking or open spaces outside. From April 28, over 700 funerals were done for four continuous days.

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