Around 140 bodies found in river Ganga, officials yet to confirm them as Covid deaths

Residents of Purvanchal and Ghazipur districts were shocked to find more than a hundred bodies along the bank of River Ganga


As many as 140 bodies have been discovered near the banks of River Ganga at Ghazipur district in Uttar Pradesh, reported Amar Ujala on May 12, 2021. The corpses drifted ashore in Ballia of Purvanchal district and Ghazipur and local administration officials are rushing to cremate and bury them. According to locals in the area, the corpses came from surrounding villages, who could not cremate their dead for lack of firewood.

Officials deployed police in regions where corpses were initially found on May 10 in Buxar district of Bihar. However, since then, bodies were discovered in Ghazipur-Ballia as well. Burials for these unknown persons continued from Monday evening till May 11 night. Several corpses were sent to Ghazipur for cremation while 123 dead bodies, found along the banks of Dharamarpur Ganga Ghat, were buried.

According to Ghazipur’s Karanda police station, excavators were brought in due to the high number of dead bodies lying on the banks of Dharampur Ganga. Bodies along Narwa, Sojhwa, Panchmukhi and Bulakia Das Mathia ghats of Sevarai tehsil were buried along the shore with the help of employees, villagers and social workers.

In other areas, where the corpses drifted ashore, locals buried the dead and sprayed lime and bleaching powder along river Ganga. Amar Ujala reported 17 dead bodies in Ballia region on Monday evening under Ballia-Buxar bridge in Thana Narhi area. Bodies were unidentifiable due to severe decomposition. Nonetheless, discovered bodies were cremated in the presence of police and administration. Apart from this, two bodies were seen near Manjhi ghat in Jayaprakash Nagar area on Tuesday.

The Hindu reported that police are currently ascertaining whether the bodies were of Covid-19 patients. However, due to the condition of the corpses, authorities are yet to confirm suspicions.

Jamania DSP Hitendra Krishna estimated that the deaths could have occurred around 10 to 15 days ago. Officials claimed that the corpses may have been thrown into the river due to the long waiting lines outside cremation grounds. Meanwhile Gahmar district head Balwant Singh said the bodies did not belong to the village and did not like how the village was embroiled in the matter based on proximity.


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