Kerala’s Payyambalam crematorium turns into battleground

The decision by Kannur Corporation to not allow the cremation of bodies without registering has turned Payyambalam crematorium into a battleground.

On Tuesday, Corporation employees, led by Corporation Standing Committee Chairman P.K. Ragesh and Adv. Martin George, were involved in a conflict with the volunteers of the CPI(M) controlled-Initiative for Rehabilitation and Palliative Care (IRPC). It ensued when the latter tried to cremate the body of a COVID-19 victim. The police had to be rushed in.

However, despite the opposition from the corporation, a body was cremated by IRPC volunteers, while two more bodies were brought here.

The incident happened on Monday after Kannur Corporation decided to directly use the corporation cleaning staff to cremate the bodies of COVID-19 victims and prevented the volunteers of IRPC from doing so by themselves.

However, the IRPC volunteers alleged that the body, which they brought at 12 noon was not allowed to be cremated till 3 p.m on Tuesday.

IRPC district chairman P.M. Sajid said the body of a Chirakkal resident was brought after they contacted the health department of the Corporation. The relatives of the deceased sought the help of IRPC as it was too late to bury the body.

However, Corporation Mayor T.O. Mohanan said that voluntary organisation should not encroach the corporation areas to cremate bodies.

He said they received complaints about the cremations done by voluntary organisation. Following which the corporation gave instruction to register before the cremation.

As the conflict escalated, more police led by the ACP P. Balakrishnan Nair reached the spot.

Meanwhile, the district collector T.V. Subhash also convened a meeting of corporation officials and IRPC officials on Tuesday. After hearing the arguments of the corporation and IRPC in this regard, the Collector clarified that the decision will be informed later.

The remaining two bodies, which were brought later were then cremated under the direction of Corporation employees.

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Printable version | Jun 25, 2021 1:19:24 AM |

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