Unveiling the harsh yet underlying reality of Uttar Pradesh‘s funeral economy will ache our hearts with tears. Who knew that the prestige cremations would turn into a proffering avenue for the state? Assuredly, the municipal corporation’s councilor Kamlesh Tiwari wouldn’t have foretold the grueling story. Since early May, Tiwari, trailed with its assistants, has faced some of the toughest awakenings of the pandemic as they huffed through the ghats to intercept the bodies.
Lately, human bodies have been streaming into the venerating Ganga river. The erosion prompted by adroitness has turned into a disappointment. The volunteers were perplexed whether to burn the bodies on a pyre or let them flow in the pristine backwaters. The officials incessantly enacted policies to overcharge cremates, subsequently leading to a dire state of affairs.
The scenario has carved nemesis in various parameters across districts in Uttar Pradesh. While the cases have dipped, and the Covid-19 induced lockdowns commence to relax, the bodies count at cremations mounts up concerns. Where does this lead the Uttar Pradesh government along the lines of extortion? Ritually cremating the bodies is becoming increasingly an uphill task for the vast majority in the Hindu heartland.
Media reports have surfaced heart-wrenching visuals of thousands of bodies flowing downstream, and yet no official website has stood up revealing the truth. While it’s pretty obvious that extremism lies within the deep roots of Uttar Pradesh, the district Panchayat’s role in exploiting the middle-class families has been monumental. The virus transmitted imminently to villages during the second wave, and it still has held its grip.
According to a report published by Dainik Bhaskar, thirty people died in a single district during May, and there was no evidence surveyed regarding these cremates. The bodies are getting cremated without much noise and information. The scenario is identical to various incidents across Uttar Pradesh.
A hefty proportion of the pandemic’s suffering has got incurred by the daily wage workers. During a survey, reports found out that people have exhausted all their savings in paying medical bills and doctor’s fees.
Piling up the turbulence, the UP government has tripled the charges for cremating the bodies between the first and the second wave. It reflects the political hubris driven across the state, and where human sentiments are degraded time and again. The question is that if the daily wage workers had sufficient money for procuring treatment, wouldn’t they have prioritized saving their family lives. Why should the people comprehend paying skyrocketing charges imposed by the UP government?
The unprecedented times have turned the corner for millions of people. Rural deaths have spiked with high intensity, and the officials used it as an opportunity to maximize their pockets by soaring the cost of cremating. Another factor that mounts trouble is that the resources are limited, funeral workers are nowhere to be seen, which has coerced people to cremate the bodies without following the rituals. It sounds so much against the kosher times when Hindu graveyards assimilated to following each norm strictly.
Economic profits and greed have triggered shops in the Prayagraj markets to enrich their stockpiles of funeral items. When the ideals of the state haven’t been the virtue of the pandemic, then how could we expect people to disseminate an example? State officials suggest that around 5% of businesses profited from the funeral rush. Wood contractors, pandits, and others associated benefitted from the arduous state and proclaimed the indication of extortion.
Managing the dead seemed a rippling task, and the longer the visuals repelled the state’s dignity excruciatingly, the administration had to step in. The foregoing predicament that has exposed the overriding damage caused by extortion, needed a set off into control mode. The government’s bizarre handling highlighted that the districts had to recoup the deteriorating images toward recuperable terms. But the situation kept on worsening and hasn’t changed a bit.
The UP government has floundered to comply with the ongoing traditions in Hindu Mythology. It has enacted its laws and asserted people to stick to them. The overcharging prices compelled the backward classes to undergo cremating the bodies by flowing them into the rivers. Thousands of such instances have followed, and the government has maintained a perilous silence on the matter.
In Varanasi, the cost went up to an astronomical figure of Rs 70,000. Reflecting on the surge in the number of deaths, the priests also took advantage and charged enormous Dakshina. The Covid-19 harsh circumstances for the communities, and there was no ease off from the government authorities.
Extortion in Uttar Pradesh: The Plaguing Enigma that Perpetuates and Exploits Human Lives
The catastrophic events across the prestigious holy river have engrossed some agitating allegations on the Uttar Pradesh hierarchy. While exempting the rights of citizens, and claiming that the paucity has nothing to do with them shows how miserably people get treated. Even if somebody vents down to break the chain, he gets entitled to punishment. The dictatorship model has not only been prevalent across the supremacy but also exists at ground levels.
Firewood cutting is the centric apprehension of the Hindu funeral economy. The wood contractors have ramped up their scale of the network in the municipal corporations and supplied their tenders in large amounts. Because of this reason, municipal corporations are not acting proactively to fix affordable rates of cremating the bodies.
The coalition of overcharging prices has been subjected to the workers responsible for conducting the rituals. In the context of the risks that they shoulder, it stands highly misjudged. If the volunteers are asking for more money, who can get blamed for it? Is the government responsible for not procuring adequate funds to assimilate the needs of the public serving citizens? Probably, it stands true.
The mocking of the pandemic has unraveled some of the shocking revelations of all times. Perceived from the skies, the impressions of bodies manifests blood circulated across the beach. According to Hindu Mythology, dead bodies are covered in sheets imprinted with Lord Ram‘s Name. It is apprehended as a sign of honoring the dead.
Who could have ever imagined that these sheets would endeavor the shocking unacknowledged and dismantled Covid-19 deaths? The shockwaves have laid down cracks within the administrative system. And the longer it continues more disastrous will it become for BJP’s fate in the Uttar Pradesh elections upcoming next year.