PRAYAGRAJ, India (AP) — Police are reaching out to villagers in northern India to investigate the recovery of bodies buried in shallow sand graves or washing up on the Ganges River banks, prompting speculation on social media that they were the remains of COVID-19 victims. In jeeps and boats, the police are using portable loudspeakers with microphones asking people not to dispose of the bodies in rivers. On Friday, rains exposed the cloth coverings of bodies buried in shallow sand graves on the riverbank in Prayagraj, a city in Uttar Pradesh state. A state government spokesman on Sunday denied local media reports that more than 1,000 corpses of COVID-19 victims had been recovered from rivers in the past two weeks. But others say COVID-19 deaths in the countryside are rising.
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