A clash broke out between police and locals after the body of an elderly woman, possibly infected with Coronavirus, was brought to the designated cremation ground in Chandpura in Ambala. After a group of villagers tried to disrupt the cremation, police lathi-charged them.
Residents of Chandpura village, adjoining the Ambala cantonment, attempted to disrupt the last rites of the woman being performed at the local cremation ground in the evening, the police said. The villagers suspected that the woman might have died of COVID-19 infection and feared that the cremation would spread the virus in the area, they said.
#WATCH Haryana: A clash broke out between police & locals after the body of an elderly woman, possibly infected with #COVID19, was brought to the designated cremation ground in Chandpura, Ambala. (27.04.20) pic.twitter.com/BQEXHOAkxx— ANI (@ANI) April 27, 2020
The crowd was assured that there was no such risk and asked not to oppose the cremation, police officials said. Police said the woman died at a civil hospital at Ambala Cantt in the afternoon. She had been admitted there after she complained of breathing problems, they added.
As a precautionary measure, doctors collected her sample and sent it for testing, news agency PTI quoted hospital sources as saying. When the relatives of the deceased reached the cremation ground at Chandpura, the villagers opposed them, the police said. Following reports of tension, senior police officers reached the area but the villagers refused to budge, they said.
Later, police had to use mild lathi-charge to control the situation. The deceased was cremated there in the presence of the police, the officials said. Superintendent of Police, Ambala, Abhishek Jorwal said around a dozen villagers were taken into custody and further investigations were underway.
"This place is the designated cremation ground for COVID-19 & likely cases, locals objected when we brought the body here. Around 200-400 people gathered here violating the lockdown, police and doctors team was attacked. Strict action will be taken," ANI quoted DSP Ambala Ram Kumar as saying.
(With agency inputs)