There is anger among residents of Dhom village in Maharashtra's Satara district at the way body of Sub-Inspector Chandrashekhar Deshmukh, killed in a Naxal attack along with 16 other policemen two days ago, was brought to his native place for last rites.
The body was sent via road. Was it not possible to send it by flight, if not through a special helicopter?" asked Dayanand Pol, a resident of the village, 275 km from here in western Maharashtra.
"Over 200 youth from our village are in the armed forces, guarding our borders. The government can spare helicopters for politicians but not for martyrs," he said.
S Jaykumar, Superintendent of Police of Gadchiroli, where the Naxal attack took place, said the decision to send Deshmukh's body by road was taken in order to save time.
"The earliest flight was from Nagpur at 11.30 am today. Sending the body by flight would have delayed the last rites. We saved four hours by sending it via road," he told PTI over phone.
"When the daughter of a leading politician filed her papers for the October 13 Assembly poll, a chartered flight was there to carry her nomination papers. But the martyrs are not so privileged," Amol Dahale, resident of Malad here said.
"Ferrying bodies quickly to the grieving relatives is the least we can do for the martyrs," he said.