Warepam Jugindro (78), a retired college lecturer, of Top Khongnangkhong, Imphal East, was admitted to COVID ward of JNIMS on May 3 after he was found to be COVID-19 positive.
In a bizarre incident, the body of an individual who died due to COVID-19 was found cremated by the authority when family members went to claim the body.
Warepam Jugindro (78), a retired college lecturer, of Top Khongnangkhong, Imphal East, was admitted to COVID ward of JNIMS on May 3 after he was found to be COVID-19 positive. Unfortunately his condition deteriorated and passed away at around 2:50 am on Wednesday.
According to a family member, they took the necessary permission from the JNIMS authority to cremate the body at his locality. Approval of the local clubs and Meira Paibi was also taken. And at around 10:30-11:00 am on Wednesday, the necessary permission of the DC of Imphal East was also taken.
But to the family’s surprise the body was found missing when they reached JNIMS. They scrambled to find out where the body actually was. Acting on a hunch, they visited the Imphal Municipality Corporation (IMC) crematorium at Minuthong, Imphal East. There it was found that the body had just been cremated.
Enraged the family members demanded explanation from the JNIMS authority. As the tension rose, police rushed to the scene. Family members said that the doctors and other staff hid from them.
Later JNIMS director Dr Bhimo and advisor to chief minister (health) MLA Dr Sapam Ranjan rushed to take stock of the incident.
Speaking to media persons, MLA Ranjan said that it was an unfortunate incident. Maintaining that there were lapses, he assured that the lapses will be found out. Health care workers are certainly stressed, but it cannot justify the unfortunate incident, he added.
Dr Bhimo stressed that due to the increase in serious cases in the past few days, the doctors and staff are stressed. All of the 10 ICCU beds in the hospital are also filled, he added.
He further said that at around 12:35 am on Wednesday one Thoudam Bhagat of Nongmeibung died to COVID-19. Shortly after at around 2:50 am, Jugindro also passed away. Another body was also present at JNIMS morgue who died on May 4 due to COVID-19, he added.
Explaining the process of disposing of the bodies who died due to COVID-19, the JNIMS director said that the concerned DC is first informed. The DC then contacts the family members to know their wishes whether they want to perform the last rites themselves adhering to proper SOP or let the municipality perform it with some family members present.
Maintaining that nothing can replace the rights and feelings of the family members, Dr Bhimo informed that a committee will look into the matter and actions will be taken accordingly.
Meanwhile, the family members of Jugindro expressed dismay at the unsystematic manner in which the authority is handling the incident. Attachments