India: Delhi adds makeshift crematoriums as Covid deaths climb

Delhi adds makeshift crematoriums as Covid deaths climb
Source: Getty Images
2 Min Read

Daily US Times: Makeshift pyres are being built in crematoriums in Delhi as the capital city of India runs out of space to cremate its dead.

Deaths have been steadily rising in India as a deadly second wave of coronavirus infections devastates the country of nearly 1.4 billion population, with 380 recorded in Delhi alone on Monday.

Medical oxygen, life-saving medicines and intensive care unit (ICU) beds are in short supply.

In just a few days, India has recorded more than a million Covid-19 cases.

The number of reported Covid-19 cases declined slightly on Tuesday, to 323,144 from the peak of 352,991 the day before, bringing the total number of cases in the country so far to nearly 17 million with 192,000 deaths.

However, it is thought the true figures are far higher – both for cases and deaths.

Local television station NDTV’s investigation found at least 1,150 extra deaths which were not included in Delhi’s official Covid count over the last week.

Other investigations have found similar examples of undercounting replicated across India.

Staff of crematoriums are working throughout the night, with relatives of the dead reportedly having to help with the cremations, assisting in rituals, including piling wood.

In Delhi, parks, parking lots, or empty ground are now being sought for the increasing need for cremations. Relatives people often have to wait for hours before they are allowed to cremate their dead.

Delhi’s Sarai Kale Khan crematorium, at least 27 new platforms have been built, with 80 more being added in the park around the existing structure.

Municipal authorities are also looking for additional spots near the the capital city’s Yamuna river bed.

A worker at the crematorium, which originally had capacity for only 22, told India’s The Hindu newspaper that they are operating from early morning to midnight.

You may read: Covid: India breaks another global record and hospitals run out of oxygen