Hyderabad: An NGO, Satya Harishchandra Foundation (SHF) that works towards helping people trace their loved ones, has reported 1866 people missing and bodies reported in the city since January 2021.
According to the foundation’s data, 933 unidentified bodies have been recorded, and 933 missing person complaints have been filed from January 2021 up till date.
The website of the foundation, www.unknown bodies.org, records data of missing person complaints filed at police stations around the city, the data of dead bodies found or reported, and destitutes found in poor health conditions.
The foundation maintains contacts with police stations and hospitals, like the Osmania General Hospital (OGH), and keeps a record of unknown/unclaimed dead bodies.
A special ward recently opened for Unknown Patients in the OGH, serviced by the Helping Hands Foundation, that looks after destitute persons found in the premises of the hospital, in poor physical and mental health conditions.
Patients and bodies are discovered by the police and admitted into the hospital, after receiving approval from the Resident Medical Officer (RMO). The police share the details with the foundation, who enter the data into their records. Families, of the unknown destitutes and bodies, identify the deceased with the help of the photos and details uploaded on the website.
SHF also run a destitute home at Ranga Reddy to provide shelter to unknown patients, along with a newspaper, ‘Ningi Nella’, to publish information of missing persons, destitute and unidentified bodies.
If the patient dies during the treatment the bodies are delivered to the mortuary. The body is preserved in the mortuary, for 72 hours, to be identified by the family before orders for disposal can be passed.
Around 1246 unidentified deaths have been recorded in the year 2019 out of which only 49 were traced back to their families. Missing person complaints filed were around 813 in the same year.
The year 2020 saw a rise in the number of missing people, amidst a complete lockdown.
According to the City Crime Record Bureau (CCRB) data, 198 missing person reports have been filed only in the month of April, with 59 unidentified deaths. The reason for a majority of destitute deaths during that period of time was hunger. The CCRB data also recorded 3127 missing persons from January to December 2020.
The foundation is on the lookout for 5500 and above missing people since the year 2009 and has cremated 15,000 bodies till date, a majority of which were unidentified.