Former Hazoori Ragi Nirmal Singh Khalsa dead, had tested positive for coronavirus

Suffered cardiac arrest on Thursday morning

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 2

Former Hazoori Ragi of the Golden Temple Nirmal Singh Khalsa died of cardiac arrest around 4:30 am on Thursday.

According to the Amritsar Civil Surgeon, he had tested posted for coronavirus on Wednesday. It was the second positive case from the district and the “first corona death”.

Earlier, a coronavirus-positive patient from Hoshiarpur had died at Amritsar Government Medical College.

The 62-year-old ‘Gurbani’ exponent was awarded the Padma Shri in 2009.

Singh, who recently returned from abroad, was admitted to Guru Nanak Dev Hospital after he complained of breathlessness and dizziness on March 30.      

Meanwhile, police have sealed the area around Singh’s residence to check the spread of the infection.

With his base in the densely populated Sultanwind area, the development would add to the trouble of the administration.

He had come back from abroad in February and later attended many religious events, including accompanying Zakir Hussain, the tabla player, to Golden Temple on February 29.

This is a day after Zakir Hussain performed at a jam packed Patiala auditorium as part of the Patiala Heritage Festival on February 27, a day after which he visited Amritsar.

Details regarding his travel history and events are being ascertained by the authorities.

According to the officials, Singh held a large ‘sammelan’ (religious gathering) in Delhi and some other places after he returned from abroad.

His family members and others who came into his contact would be quarantined, said the health department officials.

Verka residents lock cremation ground

Meanwhile, residents of Verka villlage on outskirts of the city locked the cremation ground after learning about administration’s plan to cremate Nirmal Singh. The administration had avoided cremating the deceased at cremation grounds in the city as cremation of normal deaths was under way there and usually family members attend the ceremony. Verka residents, led by a Congress councillor, stated that corona-infected person should not be cremated near a residential area.

Former SGPC member Sawinder Singh Doblia offered his agricultural land for cremation of Nirmal Singh. He also appealed to the administration in this regard.

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