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Nagaland

DIMAPUR’S NEW MALADY: Growing number of dead

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By EMN Updated: Oct 31, 2014 12:40 am
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TEMSHINARO
DIMAPUR, OCTOBER 30

The uncomfortable interplay of administrative failure and economic implosion appear to have given birth to a new, disturbing trend in Nagaland. This trend is one which is increasingly becoming an issue requiring urgent attention– the growing number of unidentified, dead bodies being discovered, especially in the commercial district of Dimapur.
According to available data, 75 dead bodies were recovered during 2011 and October 2014. The most disturbing feature is that most of the dead bodies – besides being mostly unidentified persons – are apparently that of homeless persons. A few cases of apparent suicide make an exception though.
The statistics of such cases comprising the concurrent four years was released by the Government Railways Police Station (GRPS) of Dimapur recently.
According to the then-OC GRPS SI Salie Nagi, the recovered bodies took place during his tenure as officer in-charge. The report shows that out of the 75 bodies that were recovered, only 34 was identified and handed over to their family members. The rest, 41 bodies, were unidentified and disposed off after various legal formalities.
Nagi explained that identified bodies are handed over to families and relatives after observing necessary legal procedures. However, he said, the unidentified bodies that are recovered from, say, the railway station – where a majority of the dead bodies are found – are shifted to the district civil hospital for postmortem examination and for identification.
Descriptions of the dead bodies are given to the local media seeking assistance for identification. When no claimants come forward till the mandatory period of 72 hours, the bodies are cremated at the Hindu crematory ground. The crematory is located in Walford colony of Dimapur, said Nagi.
Over the years, the number of dead bodies being recovered has been increasing. This also means that the number of non-Naga settlers, homeless drifters, and illegal immigrants seeking better economic opportunities in Dimapur has been increasing. This has now become an issue for both the settlers as well – they arrive only to find a hard economic life and most end up begging. For many, this economic reality culminates into death for them from various causes such as starvation, diseases, and even suicide.
Another bitter reflection of the harsh economic realities in Dimapur is the growing number of slums and an even larger population of beggars in Dimapur, ostensibly the commercial hub of the state. Dimapur is the only district in Nagaland that has the reputation of having the maximum of non-Naga settlers from all parts of the country.
They are mostly people who come to Dimapur in search of better livelihood but ultimately end up begging and living in the streets. The Dimapur railway platform and its unrestricted areas are one such reflection for homeless, foreign and floating settlers from outside Nagaland.
One may not see any Naga person begging on the streets of Dimapur but the population of non-Naga beggars can be seen at a more pronounced level.

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By EMN Updated: Oct 31, 2014 12:40:55 am