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Delhi: Family buries the wrong body after mix-up at Lok Nayak mortuary

In a case of mistaken identity, two bodies were mixed up at the mortuary at Lok Nayak Hospital as they had the same name.

Written by Shivam Patel | New Delhi |
Updated: June 8, 2020 7:37:15 am
Delhi covid-19, coronavirus Delhi, Delhi Covid-19 Lok Nayak Hospital, Body mix up Delhi lok nayak hospital, delhi coronavirus “We will make efforts to ensure such incidents do not happen again,” the Lok Nayak administration said.

Kalamuddin buried his father twice. The first time, it was a body that he thought belonged to his father and the second time, it was in fact his father. In a case of mistaken identity, two bodies were mixed up at the mortuary at Lok Nayak Hospital as they had the same name: Moinuddin.

One was of Kalamuddin’s father and the other was of Aijaz Uddin’s elder brother. An official at Lok Nayak Hospital said, “It is sometimes difficult to identify the body because people are often anxious in a mortuary and after death, the face lacks expression, which also makes it difficult. We will make efforts to ensure such incidents do not happen again.”

On Sunday, Aijaz said he had seen around 250 bodies at the mortuary before finding out that his brother had already been buried a day earlier at a burial ground at Delhi Gate, by another family. “We called the person who had taken the body and asked him to send a picture of the face. It was clearly my brother,” said Aijaz.

The mix up happened as the body shown to Kalamuddin at the mortuary on Thursday was difficult to identify, but the document given to the family along with it had correct details.

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While Kalamuddin could not be reached for a comment, his wife said, “The body that my husband saw had a swollen face and bloodstains, which made it hard to ascertain if it was my father-in-law. Hospital staff said this was caused when they removed the dialysis pipe. My husband had his doubts, but the report given to him had the correct address and name, so he believed them.”

Kalamuddin’s father had been undergoing dialysis at a hospital near Patparganj, where the family lives. He was referred to Lok Nayak for a Covid test on June 4 and died that night from kidney failure, Kalamuddin’s wife said.

Aijaz said his brother was brought to the hospital on June 2 after his blood pressure fell considerably and he died as hospital staff were conducting an ECG test: “My brother’s wife suffered a cardiac arrest and died when we told her about his death.”

His brother was found Covid positive when the results came in two days later. On June 5, Aijaz went to the mortuary to collect the body. “The hospital gave the wrong report, showed the wrong body. The report said Moinuddin, son of Rahimuddin, about 70 years old, while my brother is the son of Amiruddin, aged 50,” said Aijaz.

On Sunday, when he learnt the body had already been buried, Aijaz said, “It was no use to extract the body again… It was buried following all rituals… Police and hospital staff were blaming the other person (Kalamuddin) for wrong identification, but the hospital is at fault.”

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