Workers At Crematoriums In Chennai Are Facing Difficulties To Survive

Workers At Crematoriums In Chennai Are Facing Difficulties To Survive
x

Workers At Crematoriums In Chennai Are Facing Difficulties To Survive

Highlights

R Kumar (24), who works for a daily wage at a Corporation burial ground in Vyasarpadi, North Chennai, claims that two of his colleagues who work at the cemetery tested positive for Covid-19 in March. Among which one of them died and his family received no financial assistance.

R Kumar (24), who works for a daily wage at a Corporation burial ground in Vyasarpadi, North Chennai, claims that two of his colleagues who work at the cemetery tested positive for Covid-19 in March. Among which one of them died and his family received no financial assistance.

Workers at the crematoriums, doctors, nurses, and all other front-line workers, are overburdened in the dire situations of the pandemic.

People working in the crematoriums are burying Covid-19 victims' bodies for subsistence wages, either at the Corporation burial ground or in private Muslim and Christian cemeteries.

Kumar also mentioned that prior to the pandemic, the deceased's family would give them Rs 200-300 per head after the funeral. Since the pandemic outbreak, they no longer receive that money, as even family members frequently fail to attend funerals.

They needed three to four people to dig a pit that took almost two to three hours.

Since the deceased had Covid-19, they dug it 10-12 feet deep, which is substantially deeper than normal. They have excavated as many as five or six pits in a day for as little as Rs 200.

On the condition of anonymity, another worker who digs graves at a cremation near Kasimedu complains that the bodies of Covid victims don't always arrive covered as per policy. There are several instances when the family arrived for the last rites without masks which put the crematorium workers at risk.

They have no life insurance or financial benefits. Their families are impoverished. His parents have advised him to cease working here, but the family requires Rs 200 every day to survive.

During the first wave of the pandemic, two to five bodies were received at the crematoriums per day, increasing to ten to fifteen bodies in the second wave. The number of the dead received increased to almost 500 in May, making it a particularly busy month for burial ground staff. Several times are witnessed in the past weeks where the spaces were difficult to find for the deceased to bury in their ground.

Workers in cemeteries want more money and better benefits, either on a daily or monthly basis. They are demanding a stable salary for their livelihood especially in times of pandemics.

Show Full Article
Print Article
Interested in blogging for thehansindia.com? We will be happy to have you on board as a blogger.
Next Story
More Stories