The Delhi High Court on Wednesday allowed hospitals in the Capital to dispose of unidentified bodies recovered in the large-scale communal violence that took place in Delhi last month, Bar and Bench reported. The court had earlier directed government hospitals in Delhi not to dispose of unidentified bodies till further orderswere given, and had asked them to videograph the post-mortems. The court had also ordered that DNA samples from the bodies be preserved.
The order came after a writ petition was filed about a person’s disappearance from Mustafabad in North East Delhi, where there was massive violence, according to Live Law. His body was later recovered from a drain in Bhagirathi Vihar.
The bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rajneesh Bhattnagar said that the authorities should call people who have made complaints about the disappearance of their relatives to identify the bodies.
The Delhi Police had told the court that unidentified bodies cannot be kept in mortuaries indefinitely. The police had been asked to publish the details of all the unidentified bodies along with photographs, on their official website.
During the hearing, the police said they had been searching drains across the jurisdiction of several police stations and that they may recover more bodies.
Clashes had broken out between the supporters of the Citizenship Amendment Act and those opposed to it between February 23 and 26 in North East Delhi, killing 53 people and injuring over 200. The police were accused of either inaction or complicity in some instances of violence, mostly in Muslim neighbourhoods. The violence was the worst in Delhi saw since the anti-Sikh violence of 1984.
Of the 53 people who were killed in the clashes, 44 died in Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, five in Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, three people in Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital, and one person died in Jag Pravesh Chandra Hospital.