Though the Chinese government claimed that only around 2,535 residents of Wuhan died from the deadly coronavirus, residents of the city are saying that the number is substantially higher, with one estimate claiming that nearly 47,000 people died from the disease, per Radio Free Asia.
Questions first arose about the veracity of the Chinese figures after residents began posting images of thousands of urns being delivered throughout the city. As was previously covered by The Inquisitr, around 5,000 cremations urns were reported to have been transported to a single funeral home in the space of just two days -- suggesting that the total number of fatalities was at a minimum double the original estimates.
Now, residents are beginning to voice their belief that the Chinese government has covered up tens of thousands of deaths due to COVID-19.
"Anyone looking at that [death toll] figure will realize, anyone with any ability to think, 'what are they talking about [2,535] people?'" said one resident, who stated that no one in Wuhan believed the stated fatality rate was real.
Social media posts have estimated that the seven funeral homes in the city were handing out 3,500 urns daily over the past week and a half. This would put the tally of fatalities at around 42,000. Other approximations, based on the cremation furnace capacity, claimed that the total number of deaths was a staggering 46,800.
"It can't be right... because the incinerators have been working round the clock, so how can so few people have died?" a Wuhan resident surnamed Zhang asked.
A source with knowledge in the provincial civil affairs bureau claimed that Wuhan had 28,000 cremations within just one month. The insider added that many of the fatalities were people that had died at home and had neither been diagnosed with nor treated for the virus.
The source added that the Chinese government is likely aware of the true number of fatalities, adding that each funeral home must report data on cremations to the government two times each day.
Strengthening the source's claim is the fact that moratorium workers from other parts of China were alleged to have been transferred to Wuhan to help with the increased body count.
"During the epidemic, they transferred cremation workers from around China to Wuhan keep cremate bodies around the clock," a Wuhan native with the last name Chen said.
Meanwhile, "a lot of people [are] forming lines today at Hankou Funeral Home" to retrieve the ashes of their loved ones, as the city is finally releasing their remains.