Shrouded in callousness: One error, two families and twice the pain - Hindustan Times
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Shrouded in callousness: One error, two families and twice the pain

By, Lucknow
Mar 06, 2024 10:59 PM IST

As a result of the post-mortem house staff in Lucknow calling out just the first name of a deceased woman, wrong body handed over, one family has to do cremation twice, the other gets only ashes

What’s in a name? A lot for two families who had to endure a painful experience. Why? Because the post-mortem house staff in Lucknow callously called out just the first name of a deceased woman, Sandhya. The result: the wrong body was handed over and one family had to do the cremation twice, and the other got only the ashes of their loved one.

Post-mortem house in Lucknow. (HT Photo)
Post-mortem house in Lucknow. (HT Photo)

The Trivedi family, which should have received the body of Sandhya Trivedi, was given the body of Sandhya Prajapati and cremated her mortal remains at the Gulala Ghat electric crematorium here.

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When the matter came to fore, the (Trivedi) family was back at the post-mortem house to claim the body of Sandhya Trivedi. All this happened because the post- mortem house staff called out only “Sandhya”, while handing over the body. At that time, the Trivedi family was present. “They (staff) called out Sandhya and handed over the body with some papers. My brother-in-law took custody of the body, thinking it was of Sandhya Trivedi. But the fact that it was not our Sandhya’s body brought us back to claim her body,” said Sumit Tiwari, brother of Sandhya Trivedi.

The matter came to light when Prajapati family, resident of Unnao, went to claim the body of Sandhya Prajapati and the staff of the post-mortem house told them the body had already been handed over. A call was then made to the Trivedi family to tell them about the exchange of bodies.

The body of Sandhya Trivedi, a native of Madiaon in the state capital, was brought for post-mortem after her brother lodged a case of dowry death on March 5, alleging she was poisoned on March 4. The remains of Sandhya Prajapati, a native of Unnao, was brought for post-mortem after she died during treatment at KGMU.

Vipin Kumar, the husband of Sandhya Prajapati, filed a complaint with the police, stating that his wife’s body was said to be already handed over to the family, when he reached the post-mortem house.

“Sandhya Prajapati was brought to the trauma centre in a serious condition a day before and she died during treatment,” said Vipin Kumar in his letter to the Chowk police.

Police have not lodged any complaint neither any one has been held responsible for this error. The authorities of King George’s Medical University, where the post-mortem took place, blamed the police.

“The body for post-mortem is brought by the policemen. At the KGMU, post- mortem is done and body is handed over to police along with documents. Thereon, the police hand over body to the family of the deceased along with documents. KGMU has no role in handing over the body,” said Dr Sudhir Singh, spokesperson, KGMU.

Nagesh Upadhaya, the station house officer of Chowk police station, said, “Both the families have amicably settled the matter. The ashes of Sandhya Prajapati have been handed over to her family and the body of Sandhya Trivedi to her family. The last rites are being performed.”

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