In a bizarre incident, the family of an Income Tax department employee who died last year kept his body at home for almost 18 months assuming that he was in a coma, officials said on Friday.
The man's wife, who appears to be mentally unstable, sprinkled 'gangajal' on his highly decomposed body every morning, hoping that it would help him come out of the coma, they said.
In a statement, the Kanpur police said Dixit's death certificate issued by a private hospital stated that he died due to sudden cardiac respiratory syndrome on April 22, 2021.
Vimlesh Dixit, who worked in the Income Tax department, died in April last year but his family was reluctant to perform his last rites because they believed he was in a coma, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Alok Ranjan said.
"I was informed by Kanpur's Income Tax officials, who requested that the matter be investigated as the family pension files hadn't moved an inch," he said.
When a team of health officials along with policemen and the magistrate reached Dixit's house in the Rawatpur area on Friday, his family members insisted that he was alive and in a coma, Ranjan said.
After much persuasion, the family members allowed the health team to take the body to Lala Lajpat Rai (LLR) Hospital, where medical tests declared him dead, he said.
The CMO said a three-member team has been constituted to look into the matter thoroughly and asked to submit its findings at the earliest.
Police said the body was found in a highly decomposed state.
Dixit's family had also told their neighbours that he was in a coma. His wife appears to be mentally unstable, an official said on condition of anonymity.
Neighbours told police that the family members were often seen taking oxygen cylinders home.