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Agartala:The West district administration had a 24 hours as the locals residing in the vicinity of Battala crematorium refused to allow cremation of a 42-year-old who died of coronavirus.

Fearing coronavirus contamination, locals in hundreds blocked the road leading to the crematorium defying lockdown and social distancing protocols.

Tripura registered the first COVID-related death on Tuesday after the first male patient from West district succumbed to COVID-19 at the Gobind Ballabh Pant hospital.

Speaking with reporters, MLA Sudip Roy Barman said that due to misconception, the local residents opposed the cremation of the body.

“We held a meeting with the locals, and their misconceptions were cleared after a discussion. We have done our duty by making people understand their social responsibilities,” Roy Barman said.

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The patient from Chachu Bazaar area of West Tripura district was admitted after he suffered a cardiac arrest earlier on June 1. He was later tested positive for coronavirus on June 3. After being treated for almost a week, he died at COVID care ward at 3 PM on Tuesday.

The body of the deceased was cremated on Wednesday, almost 24 hours after the locals agreed to withdraw the road blockade and allow the ambulance carrying the body to enter the Battala crematorium.

Also Read: Manipur: Quarantine violators to go to jail, says CM Singh

Earlier on Tuesday, as soon as the information of the cremation of the body in Battala crematorium was made public, people in large numbers blocked the road and staged protest.

“We will not allow the administration to bring the COVID-19 positive dead body here. We have informed the police and administration that we will not leave the road until the government shifts the place for cremation of the COVID-19 affected body,” an agitator said.

They also claimed that if the administration burns the body at Battal crematorium there is every possibility of community contamination of the disease.

“We have our small children and elderly persons who might be affected if the body is cremated here. We cannot take the chances and we will not allow them to burn the dead body here. Even if they wear PPE kits to burn the body, we will not allow them,” the protesters said.

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