400 people attend funeral during lockdown, deceased turns out to be corona-positive

In a shocking incident at Arnala in Mumbai’s Vasai area, more than 400 people attended the funeral of a 55-year-old man, only to know the next day that the deceased was coronapositive. The hospital had released a patient’s body before the arrival of its Covid-19 test result, which left hundreds of people at risk in Mumbai even as India’s financial capital struggles to defeat the deadly virus.Over 40 people, who were identified as high-risk contacts, have already been quarantined.

Responding to this case of “complete irresponsibility” and “breach of lockdown rules”, the Municipal Corporation has issued noticed to Cardinal Gracias Memorial Hospital in Vasai, asking why the body was handed over to relatives even before the results of the COVID-19 test were out. In its defence, the hospital said that proper rules and regulations were followed before giving the dead body to the relatives.

According to officials, the deceased was admitted to the hospital with liver problem. He died after his health deteriorated on Thursday after getting treatment for 15 days. As per the norms, his samples were taken for coronavirus test and his results came after 24 hours. His relatives requested the officials to hand over the body because the patient died from liver problem and not corona and ultimately the officials did the same, as per the claims.

The deceased was a well-known person in his area and as a result of which around 400 people, flouting lockdown rules, gathered at his funeral. The next day they were in for a shock as the test confirmed that the deceased was corona-positive.

Dr. Balsaheb Jadhav, health officer of Vasai Taluka, said, “We have sent notice to the hospital and inquiry is on in this matter.” The news has spread fear and panic among everyone in the area.

However, the hospital said that the deceased didn’t have coronavirus and died due to the liver problem. “The patient was brought to hospital 15 days ago. His Covid-19 test was done and that came negative.

He did not have Covid-19 symptoms. He died due to liver disease. As he was put on ventilator and dialysis before handing over body, his test was done. All rules and procedures were followed. Proper instructions were given to relatives as well. Body was packed. All blame should not be put on hospital; it is like demoralising doctors and hospital staff in this period,” an official from Cardinal Gracias Memorial Hospital said.

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