Telangana: COVID-19 victim’s body carried in auto rickshaw

Nizamabad: In a shocking incident, the negligence of health officials in Telangana’s Nizamabad town, body of a COVID-19 victim was carried in an auto rickshaw.

The visuals of the body being carried in the three-wheeler in total violation of the guidelines for transporting the bodies of COVID-19 victims, went viral on social media on Saturday.

The body was seen protruding from both sides of the vehicle as it was kept at the bottom of the rear seat.

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Neither the auto rickshaw driver nor the local municipal employee sitting with him was wearing Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits.

The incident occurred on Friday but the video of the body being carried in the three-wheeler surfaced on Saturday.

The body was being shifted from Government General Hospital in the town to the graveyard. Since the ambulance was not available at the hospital, the body was carried in a three-wheeler.

Hospital sources said four patients succumbed to COVID-19 on Friday. Both the ambulances at the hospital were pressed into service to carry the bodies.

Nizamabad District collector C. Narayana Reddy ordered an inquiry into the incident and dismissed a municipal employee, who was working on contract basis.

The collector said the relatives of the deceased were not ready to wait for the ambulance and insisted that they be allowed to carry the body in their own auto rickshaw. The hospital authorities arranged for a contract municipal employee to accompany the body to the graveyard.

Taking a serious note of the incident, Director of Medical Education Dr Ramesh Reddy directed the hospital superintendent to file criminal cases against those employees handed over the body for transporting it in an auto rickshaw.

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