‘Ensure dignity to the dead at hospitals, mortuaries’

Former Union Law Minister Ashwani Kumar has written to Chief Justice of India Sharad A. Bobde to take suo motu cognisance and lay down a uniform protocol to ensure that the dead are treated with dignity in hospitals and mortuaries.

His letter referred to “heart wrenching visuals aired on various TV channels on November 27 of a dog nibbling away at the remains of a dead girl on stretcher” in a hospital in Uttar Pradesh.

Mr. Kumar, a senior advocate, said such heart-rending scenes of the dead lying in a state of indignity show that aberrations continue to occur in hospitals and mortuaries, especially amid a pandemic, despite the orders of the apex court.

“At a time when the daily mounting of deaths in hospitals is a painful reality as is the piling up of dead bodies in mortuaries, the need for an enforceable and strictly observed protocol for dealing with dead bodies consistent with the dignity of the dead is an absolute imperative,” Mr. Kumar wrote.

He said the nation looks to the Supreme Court as the “Republic’s moral and constitutional arbiter... to ensure that at least in death, citizens’ right to dignity is respected”.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 4:08:52 PM |

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