Although most of us perceive death as the sacred passage from this world and the thoughts evoked by the transition make us shiver because they remind us everyone is mortal, the same cannot be said about the “business owners” we are about to discuss.
Whether you believe that death constitutes the transition from this life to the next, the state should be revered and respected, rather than employed for profit gains. However, it turns out that few things are still perceived sacred nowadays, except of course for the all-mighty dollar sign. Let’s elaborate.
1. Insurance policies for employees that have passed
The corporate world always comes up with numerous surprising ways to increase their profit margin, that’s a given. However, if you thought that pushing employees to their limits at the office, cancelling dental plans and slicing salaries are the only methods, think again. One of the taboo subjects that you probably shouldn’t bring up with your CEO next time you meet for coffee consists of “Dead Peasant” insurance policies.
To summarize this concept, Dead Peasant insurance is basically a policy taken by the company on their employees, which pays up whenever that person dies. What’s sinister about it is that it doesn’t make a difference whether the person is still working for the company at the time of his death. Whether you quit, got fired or retired, the corporation you used to work for still gets to collect the benefits. Did we mention that they’re not legally required to inform you about the insurance policy?
2. Grave robbery for surprising resources
The fact that thieves, burglars and politicians will no longer be able to dip their fingers into our pockets after death represents one of the few comforts we cling onto in our final hours. Unfortunately, dying never constituted the theft-ward everyone hopes for, especially if you live in India. The grave robbing trade is incredibly lucrative in this country, mainly due to poverty and desperation.
In fact, in spite of the authorities’ efforts to put a stop to these criminal acts since 1985, grave robbers have found numerous ways to get around the laws. What’s even more disturbing is that your material possessions and personal effects do not constitute the main target; your physical remains do. You see, India is still among the main “exporters” of bones and skeletons outsourced from desecrated burial sites.
3. Fishing crews that specialize in salvaging dead bodies
Considering the high rates of suicide China’s currently renowned for – statistics indicate that it’s roughly 26% of the global ones – and that the preferred method is voluntary drowning, it comes as no surprise that numerous fishermen traded in their rods and nets for body fishing utensils. The cadavers that are recuperated from the lakes and rivers of the country are then ransomed back to the grieving families for up to $500. How much would you be willing to pay in order to secure a decent burial for a loved one?
4. Fake funerals for infants
In the light of the success recorded by a sob story about a family who appealed to the mercy of internet strangers to raise the cash necessary for their infant’s burial, a few unscrupulous individuals figured out there’s money to be made in this business. As of such, the World Wide Web became flooded with websites where people would request money to bury their dead children, in spite of the fact that a) the infants were not actually dead and b) they never existed to begin with. These scams, which are pretty see-through if you think about it, managed to reel in between $700 and $1,400, until the perpetrators were exposed.
5. Transforming graveyard sites into good luck charms
One of the reasons why dying in India isn’t recommended, well, just look at this case. A restaurant named New Lucky was constructed on the site of a burial ground and the success recorded by this establishment is beyond the manager’s wildest dreams. It would appear that advertising the location as able to bring good fortune upon its visitors is enough to make people from all around the world crowd the tables of New Lucky.
You should also know that between the seating of the restaurant, there are tombstones marking genuine tombs with their inhabitants still inside. The same belief that graves bestow good luck is exploited in Cambodia, where Pol Pot’s final resting place is open to visitor in exchange for an admission fee. Now, you know why people say cremation is better after all!