In this chapter of Skanda Purana:

...The son of Sage Sanāru was Upajaṅghani.

  1. Once he went to a forest where he was bitten by a serpent. Then he was brought to his hermitage by his friends.
  1. After heaving a heavy sigh Sanāru took Upajaṅghani to the cremation ground in the vicinity of Svargadvāra.
  • 6-7. A Liṅga in the shape of a Bilva fruit (Śrīphala) was lying as if hidden there. The sensible sage had placed the dead body there and thought: ‘How can the boy bitten by a serpent be cremated?’ In the meantime the boy Upajaṅghani was revived to life. He got up like one who had been sleeping.

Question is about the bold text. Are there any restrictions on cremation of the body where death is caused by a snake bite?

Related question: Any other types of deaths where cremation is forbidden?

1 Answer 1


Yes. Death from a snake bite is considered an unfortunate death, and aurdhvadēhika (funeral solemnities) are forbidden for such a person.

There are other types of deaths too which count as bad death (durmaraṇa - दुर्मरण).

Chapter 4, Dharma (Preta) Khanda,

Garuda Mahā-Purāṇa

शृणु तार्क्ष्य परं गोप्यं पत्युर्दुर्मरणेषु यत् । लङ्घनैर्ये मृता जीवां दंष्ट्रिभिश्चाभिघातिताः ॥ १०४ ॥
कण्ठग्रहे विलग्नानां क्षीणानां तुण्डघातिनाम् । विषाग्निवृषविप्रेभ्यो विषूच्या चात्मघातकाः ॥ १०५ ॥
पतनोद्बन्धनजलैर्मृतानां शृणु संस्थितिम् । सर्पव्याघ्रैः शृङ्गिभिश्च उपसर्गोपलोदकैः ॥ १०६ ॥
ब्राह्मणैः श्वापदैश्चैव पतनैर्वृक्षवैद्युतैः । नखैर्लोहैर्गिरेः पातैर्भित्तिपातैर्भृगोस्तथा ॥ १०७ ॥
कट्वायामन्तरिक्षे च चौरचाण्डालतस्तथा । उदक्याशुनकीशूद्ररजकादिविभूषिताः ॥ १०८ ॥
ऊर्ध्वोचछिष्टाधरोच्छिष्टोभयोच्छिष्टास्तु ये मृताः । शस्त्रघातैर्मृता ये चास्यश्वस्पृष्टास्तथैव च ॥ १०९ ॥
तत्तु दुर्मरणं ज्ञेयं यच्च जातं विधैं विना । तेन पापेन नरकान् भुक्त्वा प्रेतत्वभागिनः ॥ ११० ॥
न तेषां कारयेद्दाहं सूतकं नोदकक्रियाम् । न विधानं मृताद्यञ्च न कुर्या दौर्ध्वदैहिकम् ॥ १११ ॥
न पिण्डदानं कर्तव्यं प्रमादाच्चेत्करोति हि । नोपतिष्ठति तत्सर्वमन्तरिक्षे विनश्यति ॥ ११२ ॥

  • 104-109. O Garuda, hear. I shall now tell you the great secret about the rite of death for those who die through - serpent, tiger, toothed, head-breaking horned animals, disease, stone, water, brahmana, dog, nails, iron; those who die of hunger, poison, fire and cholera; those who are killed by a bull, a thief, a cāņdala, a woman in her menses, śunaki, sūdra, washerman; those who commit suicide or die by fall from a tree, hill, wall or precipice; those who die in water, on cot, in firmament, in bondage; those who are killed by urdhvocchişta, Ardhocchiştha or Ubhayocchișţa; those who die of wounds by weapon on horseback.
  • 110-112. All these deaths are known as bad deaths (durmaraṇa) where no rite of Aurdhvadehika or piņa-dana is performed. If the same is done by mistake it is all destroyed in the air.

Also, same is repeated in the other chapters -

Chapter 40, Preta Khanda,

Garuda Purāṇa

शृणु तार्क्ष्य परं गोप्यं जाते दुर्मरणे सति ॥ ४.क ॥


चण्डालादुदकात्सर्पाद्ब्राह्मणाद्वैद्युताग्नितः ॥ ८.ख ॥


न तेषां कारयेद्दाहं सूतकं नोदकक्रियाम् ॥ १० ॥ न विधानं मृताद्यं च न कुर्यादौर्ध्वदैहिकम् । तेषां तार्क्ष्य प्रकुर्वीत नारायणबलिक्रियाम् ॥ ११ ॥

  • Those who die from -


  • an attack by a low born person, from water, from snake bite, death from struck by lighting.....

  • The following deaths are known as abnormal death, and for such a person there is no rite of cremation, no water-libation, no rite of obsequvy, and no observance of impurity. For these people, O Garuda! The rite of Narayana Bali should be performed.

  • 6
    Today more than 50% of the population dies by these ways, like say cancer or cardic arrest. Still they are been cremated. Is that acceptable? Because suppose we can't stand aside to state scriptures. Also, if pinda daan is not given, how would the atma move to next lokas. Or form body till 13th day? Jul 12, 2022 at 4:31
  • 5
    The word 'disease' is also used here. Almost everyone in today's world dies this way. So am I missing something here...like...Is the meaning of to be taken as something else?
    – LSSJ Broly
    Jul 12, 2022 at 4:47

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