Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) chief DK Shivakumar on Wednesday said that the state Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa should apologise to the nation for the Ballari incident.
"It is shocking to see the Ballari incident. The way the dead bodies of the corona victims have been treated is very unfortunate. The entire country witnessed it. I request the Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa to apologise to the nation. India is known for its values and traditions," Shivakumar told reporters.
Earlier, Mr Shivakumar had posted a video which allegedly showed officials ''inhumanly'' dumping bodies of those patients who die of COVID into a pit in Ballari, the district administration confirmed it and said that the entire field team involved in the incident has been disbanded.
"It's disturbing to see bodies of COVID patients who have died being dumped inhumanly into a pit in Ballari. Is this civility? This is a reflection of how the government has handled this Corona crisis. I urge the govt to take immediate action and ensure that this doesn't happen again," Mr Shivakumar's tweet, which also had a video of the incident embedded, read.
The Deputy Commissioner, Ballari issued a press note which stated that it had conducted an enquiry after the video surfaced and it was found that the video belonged to the district and "comprises of burial of eight people who passed away after succumbing to COVID-19."
Although, according to the DC, all protocols and SOPs were followed by the team during the burial process, however, the "disrespectful handling of the bodies while being lowered on to the ground by the field staff" led to the entire field team involved being disbanded and will be replaced by a new team trained by the HOD, Forensic, VIMS.
The district administration also issued an unconditional apology to the families of the victims and to others who were hurt by the incident.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa also termed the behaviour of the staff "very inhuman and very painful" and urged the staff to tread cautiously with humanity in handling the funeral of those affected by the disease, and added, "Let's walk with humanity, and realize that there is no greater religion than humanity."