Sharmili Mallick

Bhawanipatna: In what appeared to be an unsettling replay of the infamous Dana Majhi episode, family members of a woman carried her dead body on shoulder for 5 kilometres from Kalahandi District Headquarters Hospital (DHH) to their village after the hospital authorities allegedly denied a hearse van.

According to reports, Kuni Nayak of Barapali village under Lanjigarh block of the district was admitted to the DHH yesterday after she complained of high fever. However, she died while undergoing treatment last night.

Subsequently, the bereaved family members requested the hospital authorities to provide them a hearse van to take the dead body to their village. However, Nayak’s family members alleged that despite a prolonged wait they did not get the hearse van.

With no alternative, Nayak’s family members carried Kuni's body on their shoulders and walked towards the village. After DHH authorities came to know about the incident, they immediately sent an ambulance. But, as Nayak’s family members had already covered a distance of 4 kilometres, they denied taking the vehicle to transport her body home.

Meanwhile, hospital authorities are yet to comment in connection with the incident.

It may be noted that like all State-run health institutions, the DHH has been brought under ‘Mo Sarkar’ and Secretary to the Chief Minister’s Transformation and Initiatives (5Ts) department, VK Pandian had also also visited the hospital in October to review the healthcare system. However, the incident has raised doubts on the implementation of the much-hyped initiative in the hospital.