LUDHIANA: Family members of a 69-year-old woman who died of COVID-19 in a private hospital here, refused to accept her body and cremate it, forcing the district administration to perform her last rites, said officials on Monday.
Her son refused to perform the last rights despite authorities seeking to give him the requisite protective gears and assuring him that it would shield him against the infection, said Additional Deputy Commissioner (General), Iqbal Singh Sandhu.
Admitted to a private hospital here on March 31, the Shimlapuri village resident died on Sunday.
"It was a big shock for everybody when relatives including, son of the deceased, did not come to claim her body. The body was later claimed by the district administration," said Sandhu.
He said the administrative authorities approached family members twice but they refused to claim the body.
The son of deceased was also assured that he would be given protective gear for cremation but he refused to perform the last rites, he added.
The last rites were performed late mid night by district administration officials while Kaur's son and other family members watched the cremation from a distance of over 100 metres.
The incident comes close on the heels of Amritsar's Verka village residents refusing to allow the cremation of former 'Hazuri Raagi' Nirmal Singh Khalsa, who died of COVID-19, in his native village cremation ground.