A 22-year-old man has died by a snake bite just days after he travelled to attend the funeral of his brother, who had also been killed by a snake.
Arvind Mishra, 38, passed away last Tuesday (2 August) after suffering a fatal snake bite. His funeral was held one day later in Bhawanipur village in India, with Indian news agency PTI reporting that family members including his 22-year-old brother, Govind Mishra, travelled to the village to attend.
Another relative who lived in Mishra's home, 22-year-old Chandrashekar Pandey, was also targeted by the reptile.
Police officer Radha Raman Singh explained: “Govind Mishara was killed after being bitten by a snake in his sleep. One of the relatives of the family, Chandrashekar Pandey, 22, who was in the same house, was also bitten by a snake."
Pandey had travelled approximately 50 miles with Mishra to attend his brother's funeral, and is now in critical condition after being rushed to hospital.
Kailash Nath Shukla, a member of the local legislative assembly, went to visit grieving family members in the wake of the deaths and urged officials to take measures to help prevent further incidents.
It is unclear what kind of snakes were involved in the deaths, but India is home to the common krait, saw scaled viper, Russell's viper and Indian cobra, dubbed 'the big four' in the country.
While common kraits typically only bite humans in self-defence, the Indian cobra is responsible for a large number of the venomous bites throughout India every year. Similarly, Russell's vipers are capable of striking victims from up to five feet away and are responsible for tens of thousands of deaths in India each year.
The saw scaled viper is the smallest of the 'big four', but is known to cause some of the most medically significant snakebites.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates approximately five million snakebites occur in India each year, resulting in up to 2.7 million envenomings - a potentially life-threatening disease caused by the toxins in the bite of a venomous snake.
Published reports suggest between 81,000 and as many 138,000 deaths occur each year from the bites, while envenoming also causes as many as 400,000 amputations and other permanent disabilities.
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