This world is full of diversity. Not in terms of people, places or hobbies but, their choices to make a living also differ. Very few become able to get a job that matches their passion. To all the people who do not have a passion towards their job often fail. Well, many works require physical strength while other requires mental and the remaining needs both. In this context, today we are talking about Postmortem sweepers.
It takes a courageous heart to operate dead bodies with scissors particularly if the body is rotten and houses creepy worms. Babubhai Baghela, a postmortem sweeper by profession has maintained a diary of the worst cased postmortems that were absolute sinister to face.The Diary is inked with few hideous cases that are head trembling and required enough guts to perform. Let’s move on to some creepiest scenario Babubhai has faced, that a weak hearted can’t even think of.
The First Case With Postmortem Images
The first case belongs to Rajkot where a dead body was left behind inside a dry well in Pedal region. The body had seen 8 days since death and attracted decomposing bacteria. Being my first case, I was extremely terrified. I just saw the body and out of the disinclined mood, I could not eat properly for many days.
Police had brought the body on a stretcher that was sent straight to the postmortem room. The moment I pulled the mask off, I was extremely horrified. It was a headless body that attracted microbes roaming all around it. Being my first time, my hands were trembling out of anxiety, nervousness and fear.
The second incident took place few years ago when an ongoing luxury bus from kachh to Ahmedabad met with an accident. The mini bus that met with an accident lost all its passengers. All the dead were brought to civil hospital. It was not possible to keep numerous bodies in Postmortem room and hence postmortem was carried in the Yard only.18 back to back Postmortem was gruesome and no words are enough to describe this feeling. After facing this macabre, none of the working sweepers dared to take meal.
It feels worst when we have to scissor open the bodies of dead children. I personally feel anguish on myself for doing this to bodies that once used to be an innocent soul, Babusaheb adds.
Not only Babusaheb but his father and grandfather used to be sweepers. He recalls the Lattha case of 2009 that involved the death of more than 100 people due to intoxicated wine. Up to 40 bodies was already thronged in the Postmortem room and more were in process.
Generally each sweeper works for 8 hours but in such cases they have to work for endless hours. Besides, more sweepers are called from other places to ease the work. But here, abounding bodies had filled the whole postmortem room space. In that case, we put one body over another to complete the Postmortem procedure.
Sometimes a sweeper do not wishes to postmortem. We talked to sweeper from Ahmedabad that told us his experience:
A hideous moment occurs in a sweeper’s life when he is asked to postmortem a more than 50% burnt body. A body with its bones visible, eyes popped out and tongue hanging out is never an easy thing to sway. In these cases, we use Alcohol Pre-postmortem. Though it is banned in Gujarat but we are allowed to consume it because in normal state one can’t dare to see such deformed bodies.
In another case, a body that had a well spent time underwater is worst to operate. It burst like a cracker on knifing, says Baghela. Sometimes it becomes hard to detect whether the dead body belongs to a man or a female. In such cases, the relatives find it hard to acknowledge whether the dead body belongs to their known or not. Postmortem sweepers have to collect the pieces of operated dead bodies including their bones.
Despite their hard work, hospital management do not keep them in their priority list. Generally postmortem sweepers are checked on a weekly basis and provided soap and dresses on a daily basis but it does not happen at every hospital. What they wish is to take a little care of them who will take care of your dead body.