A grieving Indian man carried his wife’s body six miles after the hospital where she was pronounced dead couldn’t provide a way to transport her body home.
Dana Manjhi, the husband, carried his wife’s body 6.2 miles by foot on Wednesday, CNN reported. His 12-year-old daughter accompanied him.
Amang Dei, the man’s 42-year-old old wife, died of tuberculosis on Tuesday evening in eastern Odisha state. “Doctors said she had malaria and TB. All the money I had was spent on medicines,” he said, which was translated by broadcaster NDTV. “[I] requested hospital to help take her body back to the village. They refused to make any arrangements. I had to carry her body on my shoulders.”
“I am carrying the dead body of my wife as I am poor and cannot afford a vehicle. I told the same to the hospital authorities. They said they could not offer any help,” Manjhi said in a video taken by local media outlet Odisha TV.
Manjhi said he had another 30 miles to walk before reaching Melghara, their village. A passerby called a journalist, Ajit Singh.
“Some locals … spotted Mr. Manjhi carrying the dead body of his wife accompanied by his 12-year-old daughter, Sanadei Manjhi, and called me,” Singh said. “We filmed him carrying the dead body and asked him what happened.”
They eventually arranged for a car for him, Singh said.
“The hospital authorities said that there are no vehicles. I pleaded with them saying I am a poor person and cannot afford a vehicle to carry my wife’s body. Despite repeated requests, they said they cannot offer me any help,” Majhi elaborated, according to the Hindustan Times.
The hospital denied that it withheld a car for him. A hospital official told CNN they didn’t know that he took the body.
The state government ordered an investigation into the incident.
“The District Collector of Kalahandi has ordered an inquiry into the incident,” state urban development minister Pushpendra Singhdeo told India TV News.