In April and May, graves and crematoriums were flooded with daily extraordinary deaths from Govt-19.
Due to lack of space or resources, many families in North and East India were forced to donate the bodies of their loved ones to the waters of the sacred Ganges to the Hindus.
Others chose to bury them in graves, dug on the sandy banks of the great river, the name of the mother goddess Ganga Maa, giving and taking life.
But the arrival of the monsoon, along with its downpour, caused flooding and evacuated the dead buried on its banks.
About 150 bodies have been cremated in the past three weeks, according to AFP officials in Allahabad, a major Hindu pilgrimage site in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.
Funerals are now proliferating on the banks of the river, where piles of firewood are piled up in anticipation of more bodies being cremated.
Dozens of bodies were still submerged in the river, AFP said.
At the height of the second wave of the epidemic, up to 600 bodies were briefly buried on the banks of the Ganges, city officials said.
But some residents have underestimated the number and fear new bodies will appear during the next flood.
Millions of Hindus traditionally go to the Ganges to bathe, wash or perform funeral rites for their sins, resulting in the cremation of the dead on its shores and then scattering their ashes in the water.
Fear of hitting a body
Sonu Chandel, a boatman working on a crematorium on the banks of the Ganges, recalled brief burial scenes a few months ago, which shocked him and he worried about the rising water.
“It was very sad to see these poor people burying their loved ones in such an unworthy manner, and the rising water is making the situation worse,” he told the AFP.
“I was always scared [un cuerpo] Hit my paddle or whatever [mi bote] Pass a corpse when the water rises, “he added.
Dipin Kumar, who lives near the Ganges in Allahabad, told AFP that the situation “runs the risk of creating dangerous diseases. The government should investigate this.”
Residents of other major religious sites in northern India, located downwards, fear that the prolonged presence of bodies will cause further damage to the river, which is one of the most polluted in the world.
Police and state rescue teams patrol the river for the bodies.
For this purpose the authorities mobilized two boats ashore, sometimes looking for local fishermen.
“The flow is very fast,” a police official told AFP. “Getting the bodies out now is a challenge,” he said.
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