Woman, 21, wrongly declared dead and cremated while still ALIVE

The 24-year-old woman, who doctors said had died of "cardiorespiratory arrest and acute respiratory distress syndrome", showed no signs of life after being pulled out but more than 70% of her body had been burned.

Doctors at the Sharda hospital in Greater Noida, in northern India's Uttar Pradesh state, where she was originally declared dead, maintain that Rachna did in fact die there.

Her husband Devesh Chaudhary, 23, took possession of her body at 1.27am and drove with it and some friends to a funeral pyre location in Aligarh, two hours away, where at 8am they began to cremate her.

The mix up is said to have happened when doctors are claimed to have mistakenly pronounced her dead after she was taken to hospital with a lung infection.

Rachna Sisodia died two days after being admitted to hospital in Noida, a town just outside Delhi, with fever, breathlessness and abdominal pains.

According to the Times of India, police then arrived on the scene and pulled the woman from the fire, believing she was still alive. The particles go inside with the breath. "So, the doctors concluded that the woman was burnt alive on the pyre", police said.

A post mortem examination is said to have found charred particles in her windpipe which suggested that she was alive and breathing during the cremation service. If a person is dead, such particles can not reach the lungs and windpipe.

Police have filed multiple cases against her husband and 11 others. Rachna had gone missing from her house in Bulandshahr on December 13 past year.

Her family are now accusing her husband and his relatives of raping and murdering her. Police are taking the accusations seriously but say they have been unable to find the accused.

Now, doctors have also preserved a piece of bone for conducting DNA tests, whose results should be available soon.

  • Leroy Wright