The Uttar Pradesh government has declared deaths due to snake bites as a state calamity. Families who lose their loved ones to snake bites will now be eligible to claim compensation of Rs 4 lakh which the government will provide within seven days of the death. Additional Chief Secretary Manoj Kumar has notified all the district magistrates in UP about the new order.
Earlier, there was an extensive and complicated process for confirming a snakebite death. The forensic lab used to examine the viscera of the deceased. However, the forensic state legal cell claims there is no justification for viscera report as it cannot accurately confirm a snakebite death. According to the new policy, a viscera report will not be needed to confirm a snakebite death.
A viscera report is made to determine the cause of death. The tests include the thorough examination of internal organs of the body, specifically those within the chest, abdomen and pelvis.
The new order by the Yogi Adityanath government entails that in case of a snakebite death, a postmortem is to be done, but there will be no need for a viscera report. After the confirmation of a snakebite death, the district magistrate will have to ensure that Rs 4 lakh compensation is provided to the family of the deceased within seven days of the incident.
Uttar Pradesh reports a spike in snakebite deaths during the rainy season when the serpents come out in the open. Districts like Lakhimpur Kheri, Pilibhit, Gorakhpur and Deoria become hotbeds for snake attacks during monsoon.
Recently, a four-year-old boy died in Saharanpur after he was bitten by a snake while sleeping on a cot. The incident took place around 4 am when the snake fell from the terrace and bit the toddler on his face.