India’s Supreme Court has slammed hospitals and authorities for treating COVID-19 victims “worse than animals” after one body was found in the rubbish.
As deaths continue to mount in India, which has now reported over 330,000 cases and nearly 10,000 virus victims, the country’s top court has reportedly issued notices to federal and state governments on the “deplorable conditions” facing patients who are being “treated worse than animals”.
A court spokesperson said: “In one case, a body was found in the garbage. Patients are dying and nobody is there to even attend to them.”
On 12th June, India reported a spike of 10,956 new cases and 396 deaths in a 24-hour period, the highest single day increase in the country so far.
However, similar to other countries around the world, the number of infections in India is believed to be much higher due to a lack of testing and resources.
Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia, said the capital, which already has around 35,000 cases, could reach 550,000 by the end of July.
According to local media, many morgues are already at capacity and some bodies are being kept on ice slabs as summer temperatures reach 40 degrees Celsius.
Hearse driver Bhijendra Dhigya told reporters: “In the beginning, I used to carry only one body. Now, helpers at the morgue will stack as many bodies as they can fit in my van.”
The situation has also affected the way burials are held in the country and Hindu mourners are having to forfeit many burial rites such as chanting sacred Vedic hymns and sprinkling the bodies with holy water from the Ganges River.
Muslim burials have also been affected and bodies are arriving at cemeteries in hearses manned by workers in hazmat suits. The corpses remain unwashed, loved ones cannot view them, and there are no sermons, according to local media.
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