Bengaluru, April 24 : In a bid to reduce the number of complaints about crematorium staff charging unduly, Bengaluru civic body on Friday evening issued a circular announcing appointment of 24 nodal officers for 12 crematoriums that are functional across the city.
According to a circular issued by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), 24 nodal officers would be working in two shifts – morning and evening – 12 hour each. “Officers will interchange their shifts or they can perform their duties in either of the shifts,” an official revealed.
“With the appointment of nodal officers, the BBMP can directly monitor what and where exactly the problem lies. The nodal officers have been asked to submit reports on the happenings of designated crematoriums allotted to these officers. These officers will report directly to Chief Commissioner of the Bengaluru civic body, Gaurav Gupta,” the circular stated.
Bengaluru city with a more than a crore population has 12 electrical crematoriums in total with two furnaces each that are operated by the Bengaluru civic body. These crematoriums are situated in eight divisions of the city: Medi Agrahara and Hebbal-Kempapura of Yelahanka division, Kudlu of Bommanahalli, Panathur of Mahadevapura, Kallahalli in East division, Harishchndra Ghat and Mysuru Road of West division, Kengeri, Sumanahalli and Peenya of Rajarajeshwari Nagar division and Banashankari and Wilson Garden of Southern division have been allowed to cremate dead both Covid and non-Covid bodies.
According to the staff working in these crematoriums, each crematoriums’ used to cremate 10-12 bodies on an average prior to Covid in 2020 but during the second wave of the Covid, each crematorium is receiving nearly 40 bodies a day and furnaces of the crematoriums working round the clock. With bodies piling up and staff is forced to work round the clock.
Meanwhile relatives of the dead are complaining that staff were overcharging to an extent of Rs 50,000 to perform last rites of a dead person. These complaints have forced the state government to set up at least two makeshift crematoriums on the outskirts of city besides allowing the dead persons relatives’ carryout last rites in a land owned by them.
Despite these measures, dead bodies are continue to pile up in front of all crematoriums in the city.