Kathmandu, November 11
Around two weeks ago, Chuna Devi Katuwal, a resident of Khotang, died in Kathmandu. The family took her to Pashupati Aryaghat for cremation.
But, the cremator the Pashupati Area Development Trust assigned for Katuwal’s last rites did not begin her cremation for a long time. Instead, he began bargaining for a kickback.
The kin gave him Rs 605. But, it further angered him–apparently because the money was less than he sought. The family added Rs 2,000 to make him begin the cremation.
As per the trust’s rule, a family has to pay Rs 6,000 for cremation. If the family wants to decorate the funeral pyre additionally, they have options for various goods and services costing up to Rs 40,000.
“But, the staffer bargained with us taking advantage of our grief,” Hem Raj Karki, a relative of the deceased says, “Of course, we could not fight with him that time. Therefore, we gave what he demanded.”
The trust officials themselves concede that this is just a representative case as they have received many other complaints about similar incidents these days.
“Yes, this is illegal,” the trust’s managing director, Ghana Shyam Khatiwada, says, “We will immediately take action against them.”
Khatiwada informs the trust has recently taken action against two of the cremators found demanding bribe. However, if any family wants to give some tips to the cremators, that should be fine, Khatiwada shares.