The police in Uttar Pradesh have recovered six bodies, suspected to be of coronavirus patients, from the river Ganga in Fatehpur district, PTI reported on Monday, citing an official. Various incidents of bodies floating in rivers or buried in sand along riverbeds have been reported from the districts of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar recently.

Fatehpur Sub Divisional Magistrate Pramod Jha said a search operation was launched to retrieve the bodies after they were informed about the corpses on Sunday. Later on Monday, the bodies were cremated in adherence to coronavirus protocols, Jha said. The officer added that the bodies could not be identified as they were highly decomposed.

Several similar incidents were reported earlier this month. On May 16, the Centre had directed authorities in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to prevent the disposal of bodies in the Ganga and its tributaries.

Following this, the National Human Rights Commission had released an advisory to the Union government, all the states and Union Territories, calling for a special law to uphold the dignity of the dead.

According to a report by Dainik Bhaskar published on May 14, more than 2,000 bodies were found floating or buried in a 1,140 km stretch along the river Ganga in Uttar Pradesh.

Last week, a video of a coronavirus patient’s body being dumped into a river had emerged from Uttar Pradesh’s Balrampur district. In the video, two men can be seen lifting a body on a bridge over river Rapti. One of them, wearing personal protective equipment, seemed to be trying to open the body bag to dump the corpse.