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Man declared ‘dead’, found alive during post-death rituals

The man named Navin Bhatt, allegedly an alcoholic, was missing for the past nine years

Published Date – 06:06 PM, Sat – 2 December 23


Man declared ‘dead’, found alive during post-death rituals

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Pithoragarh: A 42-year-old man, declared “dead” by his family, was later found to be alive when his post-death rituals were being carried out.

The man named Navin Bhatt, allegedly an alcoholic, was missing for the past nine years.
Upset over Navin’s drinking habit, his wife Rekha had also left him and shifted to Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow with their two kids.


His father Dharmanand Bhatt received a call from the police on November 23 stating that they had found an unclaimed body in Haldwani and recovered a slip from his pocket which says his name is Navin Bhatt, said Ramesh Mahar, former gram pradhan of Sripur Bichwa village from where the man hails.

Navin’s family went to Haldwani and identified his body.

They brought the body to their ancestral village near Khatima in Udham Singh Nagar district and “cremated” it.

However, when Navin’s post-death rituals were being conducted in the village, a friend of his younger brother called him up to find out why their shop in Rudrapur was closed.

Navin’s younger brother KD Bhatt told him that it was closed as his elder brother had died and his post-death rituals were underway.

Shocked to hear this, his friend told him that it was impossible as he had met his elder brother Navin just a few minutes ago.

He caught Navin and put him on a video call with his family to make them see for themselves and believe what he was saying.

Navin’s relatives rushed to Rudrapur and actually found him alive.

The post death rituals being conducted in his village were consequently cancelled.
The family had mistaken someone else’s body as Navin’s and cremated it thinking that he had died, Mahar said.

Navin’s family treated his sudden return as his second birth and renamed him as Narayan Bhatt.

They performed his sacred thread ceremony (janeu sanskar) before re-marrying him to his wife Rekha, who had come to the village on hearing about her husband’s “death”.
Mahar said that Navin has vowed not to take to drinking again and look after his family.

Navin’s family originally hails from Beltari village in Pithoragarh district but they are now settled in Sripur Bichwa village in Udham Singh Nagar district.

Praveen Singh Tewatiya, a police officer in Haldwani who had handled the matter, said the unclaimed body had been handed over to Navin’s family after they identified it to be of their son.

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