A poor tribal from a hamlet in Khargone’s Khalghat area waited for 15 hours at Indore’s government-run MY Hospital to cremate his dead wife because he had run out of money.
The body could be cremated only after a non-profit organisation gave him Rs 2,500 he needed for the cremation.
Thursday’s incident comes against the backdrop of a similar case that took place in Odisha’s Kalahandi district where a tribal man walked with the body of his dead wife for 10 km after allegedly being denied an ambulance. He didn’t have money to hire one.
MY Hospital superintendent in-charge Dr VS Pal admitted there was no mechanism to help the poor in such cases.
Nakhiya’s wife Laxmi was suffering from jaundice and died on Wednesday night.
“As per practice in cases of death due to prolonged illness, the body was handed over to the next of kin one hour after the death. The husband did not tell us about his problem. We could have surely helped him,” Dr Pal said.
Nankhiya sat with his dead wife, Laxmi, on a bench inside the MY Hospital throughout the night but no one took notice of his plight for over 15 hours.
On Thursday morning, Suflam Seva Sanstha members provided money and arranged for an ambulance.
Dimple Seni, a Sanstha member, said: “Nankhiya is a poor tribal and is not aware that there are institutions that help in such situations. The hospital authorities rarely take a pro-active role and inform people in such situations.”
On Monday, a man was made to go around in circles after losing his 12-year-old son to a fatal snake bite in Jhabua district.
Pagu Garwar brought the body to the Meghnagar health centre for official post-death formalities, but doctors there refused to conduct an autopsy saying the family needs to inform police first. The autopsy was conducted but the hospital allegedly didn’t provide the father a stretcher, forcing him to carry the body on his shoulder.