Volunteers trained to take up last rites for Covid victims

Source: TOI | Published on 7th July 2020, 6:08 PM | Coastal News |

Mangaluru: Over the last few days, media is abuzz with disturbing videos of how coronavirus victims are ill-treated during the last rites. Besides this, reports of locals opposing the burial/ cremation of victims are also on the rise. In an attempt to ensure that the last rites of such victims are conducted with dignity, PFI has trained 30 volunteers in the city.

PFI state secretary A K Ashraf told TOI: “With three teams in Mangaluru, we are hoping to reach out the needs across the district. Volunteers have been told about the dos and don’ts of handling bodies. A similar programme was conducted across India, including Maharashtra, where families reportedly would not turn up to claim the body. This is where our volunteers chip in to do the needful.”

Following Covid-related deaths in Dakshina Kannada, national member Ashraf, along with Dr Naveen Kumar V, imparted the training, and the same was given to volunteers in Udupi recently. “We hope to set up teams of 30 members each in every district. We are reaching out to the administrations of all districts seeking permission to conduct training,” Ashraf said.

Dr Kumar, dermatologist at the district Wenlock Hospital and the resource person for the training programmes, said they follow the guidelines issued by the central government on dead body management. “Since Muslims do burial and it calls for good number of men for the last rites, the volunteers will assist in the process. Training is imparted on how to assist, how to wear PPEs, and the like. So far, around 150 people from different organisations have been trained in Mangaluru,” he added.

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