A 14-year-old girl was cremated on her school premises, after she died of malaria on Friday, due to lack of a proper cremation ground at Ratnagiri village in Guna district.
The girl was a student of Class 7 at Government Naveen Middle School.
According to a source, Prabha Bai was suffering from malaria for the last 10 days. On Friday morning, her condition deteriorated and she died. Her father Kamal Singh, a farmer in the village, took her body near a makeshift cremation ground near the school for her last rites.
However, the makeshift cremation ground was filled with rainwater after which he took the body to the school premises. Classes were called off due to the cremation and the students were sent home by the management.
“There was no proper cremation ground in the village as the school building and the village Panchayat office was built on the land of the cremation ground three years ago after orders from the ex-Sarpanch of the village, Bhagwan Singh Yadav. The decision was protested by the villagers at that time but he didn’t pay any heed to them,” said the source. “The villagers asked the authorities concerned to allot a land for another cremation ground but no action was taken.”
The last rites were performed in front of the villagers and Panchayat members, added the source.
District collector of Guna Rajesh Jain said he did not have any information about the incident.
“No such incident has come to my notice and I will take action only after getting details. However, there is no dearth of land for cremation grounds in the state and many new cremation grounds are being made in various places of the district to avoid any problems,” said Jain.
(inputs from Vikas Dixit)