A lawsuit was brought by a woman named Jagadheeswari against a prior directive to remove and move her late husband’s bones from their current resting place on private property held by someone else to a specified burial location.
Does the burial permitted under the Rules of 1999 have to take place on the allocated area, especially when the designated site is located in the village?
Submission From Parties
The legal representative representing Jagadheeswar said that neither the stipulations of the 1999 Rules nor the Tamil Nadu Panchayats Act, 1994 forbade the interment of the dead anywhere other than authorised or designated burial grounds.
Analysis of Court Verdict
Although the Tamil Nadu Village Panchayats (Provision of Burial and Burning Grounds) Rules, 1999 do not impose any such restriction on burials, The Madras High Court’s full bench of Justices R Mahadevan, G Jayachandran, and Mohammed Shaffiq decided that all citizens of Tamil Nadu, whether they dwell in urban or rural regions, must bury the deceased exclusively at predetermined burial places.
Furthermore, it said that, in cases when the deceased are buried anywhere other than the specified areas, they must be removed and reburied there in order to protect the public’s health. The bigger bench stated that the expense of exhuming and burial such deceased corpses at the authorised areas will be borne by the affected family.The entire bench then heard the case and decided against interment in undesignated places.