Power shortage plays hell at Kapuwatte crematorium

20 June 2019 12:05 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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By P.H. P. Perera 

The lack of continuous power supply at the Kapuwatte Crematorium in Ja-Ela had caused severe inconvenience to people during funerals, residents said. 


“Grieving family members were being inconvenienced during the cremation process because there is no power generator at the crematorium,” they said.


Residents said people had to wait for hours without being able to get the bodies cremated when there was no electricity. 


“Though LP gas is being used for the cremation of bodies, electricity is needed to activate the blower which provides air to cremate the body and to operate an electronic control panel. 
“Since there is no power generator at the crematorium, electricity supply has been taken from the main power supply lines. When the power supply was disconnected, people have to wait with the coffin outside till the power supply resumes,” a resident said. 


Mahinda Kaludewa, the President of the Ja-Ela Urban Council Tax Payers’ Association, said his uncle’s last wish was to be cremated in a pyre. 


“He didn’t want to be cremated in an electric crematorium. After obtaining the approval from the Urban Council, I paid money to relevant institutions and built a pyre for the cremation. After that, the Urban Council said it can’t allow me to use a pyre. 


“I was helpless because I couldn’t fulfil my uncle’s final wish. I was afraid that the body will not be cremated completely if the electricity was discontinued,” he said. 


A relative of a deceased, who had to face difficulties due to power shortage at the crematorium, said the family had to wait for hours with the coffin for power supply to resume. 
“I paid Rs.4,500 to the Urban Council for this,” he said. 


Commenting on the matter, Ja-Ela Urban Council’s Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) member Vijitha Perera said the crematorium was within his constituency and a power generator should be fixed to avoid difficulties. 


“I will draw the Council’s attention to the issue,” he said. 


Meanwhile, Mayor Shammika Dias said they had informed the utility provider to inform them beforehand power cuts. 


“However, sometimes they don’t do that. Had they informed us, we could have not taken in the bodies. It is true that people are being inconvenienced when there is no electricity. We will include in our 2020 proposals to buy a power generator to the Kapuwatte crematorium to end the crisis,” he said. 

 

A relative of a deceased, who had to face difficulties due to power shortage at the crematorium, said the family had to wait for hours with the coffin for power supply to resume. 

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