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The family or relatives of the deceased have the right to the dead body. It cannot be detained due delay in payment of fees or another reason. The hospital or the doctor denying a certificate is in violation of this right and redressal can be sought by either complaining at the hospital’s grievance office or complaint to the State Medical Councils to seek disciplinary action against a doctor or hospital administration.23 If the doctor or hospital engages in criminal conduct, a FIR can be filed and police can be called to register the complaint. Moreover, the practise of hospitals which are not releasing the dead bodies over non-payment is prohibited and necessary order under the Disaster Management Act has been issued and the district administration can also issue a show cause notice24can be issued to such hospitals. As a provisional death certificate is required for the purposes of cremation, registration of death and other legal matters it is important for the families to have the certificate and delaying it is a crime against humanity in time of pandemic25.
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