Amid the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the state, the Karnataka government on Saturday, July 25, announced waiver of crematorium fees for those who succumb to the deadly virus in Bengaluru and said the city civic body would bear the cost.
From now on, families of those who died due to COVID-19 need not pay any fees fixed by the city civic body - Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) - across 12 electric crematoriums in the city, the government said.
"There were reports in the media about difficulties faced in performing the last rites of those who died due to COVID-19 infections. Aimed at resolving those difficulties, certain decisions have been taken," Revenue Minister R Ashoka was quoted by The News Minute.
Speaking to reporters, the Minister said that the BBMP had fixed Rs 250 as the cremation fee, Rs 100 for the ash collection pot and Rs 900 for the bier (bamboo stretcher on which the body is carried). All these costs have now been waived for COVID-19 deaths.
"So it will be a waiver of Rs 1,250 per cremation. The BBMP will bear this cost," the Minister added.
Meanwhile, for every last rites civic body personnel conduct of COVID-19 victims, the Minister also announced an incentive of Rs 500.
"This is in recognition of their services at a time when family members of the deceased are not ready to touch the body and not ready to take the body in some cases," Ashoka said.
The Minister also pointed out that the government has identified 23 acres of land at five places around Bengaluru for burial or cremation of COVID-19 victims. However, local residents are protesting against the move.
"Bodies are either burnt or buried eight feet below. So there will not be any problem for those living in nearby areas and it will not spread infection. Cooperate with humanity," the Minister said, stating that the government's aim was to ensure respectful burial or cremation for the deceased.Also Read: Odisha: Free Uniforms, Textbooks For Class 9, 10 Students In Keonjhar To Reduce Dropout Rates