A poster at Ghazipur crematorium that says more than 20 people shouldn't be in the premises. | Photo: Simrin Sirur/ThePrint
File photo of a crematorium in Ghazipur | Simrin Sirur | ThePrint
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New Delhi: Amid a surge in the number of COVID-19 fatalities and a shortage of wood, two civic bodies in the national capital have given its nod to the use of cow dung and stubble mixture for cremation of bodies.

North Delhi Municipal Corporation Mayor, Jai Prakash said cow sheds under NDMC’s jurisdiction have been asked to install machines that will convert cow dung into dung cakes.

The money for these machines may be allocated under the CSR funds, he said.

The decision has been taken in view of the rising number of deaths due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A circular said North Delhi Municipal Corporation had approved a resolution for using fuel manufactured from cultivation refuse and cow dung (parali fuelcakes/bricks /upla) in the supplementation to fuel wood for cremation of dead bodies in various cremation grounds under its jurisdiction.

“The Public Health Department has been getting suggestion through various public representatives and members of Deliberative Wing for use of fuel manufactured from cultivation refuse that will reduce the consumption of wood resulting into lesser cutting of trees and finally will protect environment.

“Further , promotion of use of Parali will motivate the farmers to not burn it and instead sell it to cremation ground,” the circular said.

The north civic body will seek the help of NGOs, Self-help groups and other social organizations producing fuel manufactured from cultivation refuse and cow dung to make this fuel available at cremation grounds under the jurisdiction North DMC in lieu of supplementation to fuel wood at no profit no loss basis, it said.

East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) mayor Nirmal Jain also said they have approved the proposal seven-eight days ago.

With municipal-run crematoriums facing a shortage of wood for funeral pyres in the face of surging COVID-19 fatalities, North Delhi Mayor Jai Prakash had on April 28 urged Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to direct the forest department to ensure smooth supply of firewood to these facilities.

The national capital reported 407 COVID-19 fatalities and 20,394 cases with a positivity rate of 28.33 per cent on Sunday, the lowest since April 19, according to a bulletin issued by the Delhi health department.

The city has so far recorded 11,94,946 cases, of which over 10.85 lakh have recovered. The death toll due to the viral disease stands at 16,966, the bulletin said.

Also read: China’s top govt body mocks India’s cremation pyres, deletes posts after backlash


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