BHAWANIPATNA: Kalahandi district, home to Dana Majhi who grabbed headlines for transporting his wife’s body on his shoulder, is in the news once again. Daughters of a woman had to cremate her after none of their relatives or community members turned up for the last rites in the tribal dominated district on Saturday.
Pankajini Satpathy and her three sisters - Radha, Pratima and Sanjukta of Dunkripada village under Phunda gram panchayat of the district took the body of their mother Kanaka Satpathy (80) on a cot and cremated it in the village cremation ground. Kanaka had died in her house on Friday evening and as dusk had set in, her daughters decided to cremate the body on Saturday morning. Accordingly, they informed all their relatives but none turned up.
With no brother to shoulder the responsibility, the daughters loaded the body on a cot, turned upside down as per their customs, and took it for cremation.
As the daughters did not have money to arrange wood for cremation, they pulled out wooden planks from the roof of their house. Pankajini and Pratima lit the funeral pyre.
According to reports, Kanaka was staying with her four daughters. While Pankajini, Radha and Pratima are widows, Sanjukta is deserted by her husband few years back. Sanjukta has two daughters and a son, while Pratima has a daughter.
All of them were staying together and Kanaka eked out a living by begging with her grand-daughters after the death of her husband, Murali, 30 years back.
The family lived in abject poverty in a thatched house on the outskirts of the village. Sources said Kanaka and her daughters were ostracised from the village.
Dishonour to the dead againBalangir: In yet another incident of dishonour to the dead, a body was tied with a rope and dumped into a bag by the GRP officials before being pulled into a train bogie in the district on Saturday.
An unidentified person died after falling from a running train on Friday night at Nanajhar.
On Saturday, the GRP personnel reached spot and instead of lifting the body on a stretcher, they tied it with ropes, dumped it in a bag and pulled it up into the train to take it to Balangir for postmortem.
GRP ASI Makaru Sahu said, “As the helpers were old and the train was about six to seven feet high, we had to use a rope to lift the body.”