Nanded group performs funeral of COVID-19 victims; earns praise

Aurangabad: A group of youths in Nanded city of Maharashtra has so far performed the last rites of 75 COVID-19 victims irrespective of their religion, which has earned praise from the local civic body.

Named ‘Happy Club’, the group has 20 youngsters as its members.

Before the coronavirus outbreak, this group used to perform the last rites of unclaimed bodies in Nanded. However, since the last four months, they have been performing the funerals of COVID-19 victims to help the family members of the deceased.

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President of Happy Club, Mohammed Shoeb, said, “We are a group of 20 youths engaged in this work since the last four months. We have performed the funerals of 75 COVID-19 victims during this period.”

“If the victim is a Hindu, we arrange a funeral pyre and then perform the last rites, but if the deceased is a Muslim then we perform Namaz-e-Janaza and bury the body,” he said.

“Before the pandemic, we used to perform the last rites of unclaimed bodies. Now we are working for COVID-19 victims. In many cases, the relatives of a coronavirus victim are either quarantined or under treatment. So in such situation, we try to help,” Shoeb said.

Syed Amer, a member of the group, said, “Earlier, we used to perform the funerals of infected or injured persons.

Hence, there is no fear left now. The Nanded Municipal Corporation (NMC) provides PPE kits to us and we don’t charge a single rupee from anyone for this service.”

Another member, Mohammed Sohail, said, “Our parents encourage us to do this work. They say if we don’t take this initiative, who will work for people at this critical time.”

NMC Deputy Commissioner Shubham Kyatamwar said the work of this group is really praiseworthy and encouraging.

“They conduct the funeral of COVID-19 victims, but none of them has contracted the infection so far. This is the best example that if we take proper care we can remain safe.

Moreover, they don’t charge any money for this service,” he added.

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