Origin of 102 bodies found in Indian river being investigated; water burials suspected

Authorities are investigating how 102 bodies, many of them of children, ended up in an offshoot of the Ganges River in northern India.

Officials do not suspect a crime, and instead believe the dead were given water burials. It is Indian custom not to cremate unwed girls and many poor people cannot afford cremation.

Unnao District Magistrate Sauma Agarwal says the bodies are too badly decomposed for autopsies or identification, but that DNA tests are being done to determine where the bodies might have come from.

Villagers first noticed the bodies Tuesday, stuck on a river bank with dogs and vultures circling the area. The narrow river breaks off from the Ganges just before passing Pariyar in the state of Uttar Pradesh.

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