Proper cremation is a birthright.
However, in a clear display of indifference, a poor ragpicker and toy seller was made to cremate his grandmother in a public space using nothing but dry leaves.
Murugesan, a 45-year-old toy seller and rag picker, had no other option but to set fire to his grandmother’s mortal remains in the village public space.
The villagers of Nerusalakudi in Tamil Nadu refused to allow Murugesan to either bury his grandmother’s body in the village compound or burn it in the Hindu cremation ground.
Too poor to carry the dead body to Vellankini, his native place, Murugesan first approached the local church to allow him to bury the body in the cemetery. Upon their refusal, he approached the villagers for the village cremation ground but was met with a ‘no’ there as well.
Hence, the heart-broken grandson decided to pay respect to the mortal remains of his grandmother by cremating her in public. However, as soon the pyre was lit, villagers informed the police who rushed to the spot to find a partially burnt body.
The police doused the fire, picked up the body and gave it a respected and long-due funeral.
SI Rajeshwari of Nerusalakudi commented,
It was a natural death.Since he didn’t get permission to bury or cremate the body in the village, he cremated the body in an open place. We stopped it and arranged for a proper funeral.
The police have ruled out any foul play in the death and have arranged for the issuance of a death certificate from village administration.
It is indeed a matter of shame for humanity when proper funeral is denied.