The deaths from the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic in India is becoming a horror story for the nation.
The states of Uttar Pradesh (UP) and Bihar have fished over 140 partially burned, decomposed and bloated from river Ganga, now several local outlets have reported over 2,000 dead bodies in various UP districts hastily buried or abandoned along the banks of Ganga.
According to one report by Dainik Bhaskar, more than 900 dead bodies had been buried along the river in Unnao region last week alone. About 350 deaths were reported in Kannauj, 400 in Kanpur, and 280 in Ghazipur.
Local residents have blamed shortage of wood for cremations and the rising costs associated with funerals left families with no option but to put the bodies of loved ones who had died from coronavirus directly into the river.
Images of corpses drifting down that river has shocked the country and the world.
Although media reports have linked the increase in the number of bodies found floating in the river and its tributaries in recent days to the pandemic, officials are yet to publicly confirm the cause of the deaths.
Uttar Pradesh, home to 240 million people, more people than Brazil or Pakistan, has been badly hit by the second surge in COVID-19 cases. Several experts have claimed cases are going undetected in the villages due to poor, controlled testing in rural areas and other factors. Experts also believe the real death toll could be as much as ten times worse than the official figures.