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Thursday, Nov 21, 2019

10 dead after consuming spurious liquor in Uttar Pradesh

At least 10 people died and 16 were taken seriously ill after allegedly consuming spurious liquor in Kanpur district and its neighbouring Kapur Dehat

india Updated: May 20, 2018 21:20 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Kanpur
A villager of Enayatpur of Magrahat showing a packet of 'Hooch Pouch' at Magrahat in West Bengal, India.
A villager of Enayatpur of Magrahat showing a packet of 'Hooch Pouch' at Magrahat in West Bengal, India.(HT File Photo)

Ten people have died and 16 taken seriously ill after drinking homemade illicit liquor in two neighbouring Uttar Pradesh districts in the last 24 hours, officials said on Sunday.

Six people died in Kanpur Dehat’s Matauli, Maghaipurwa and Bhanwarpur villages on Sunday, barely a few hours after police cracked down on illicit brew in nearby Kanpur district following the deaths in Sachendi village.

The seriously ill were admitted to LLR Hospital and Ursula Horsman Memorial Hospital in Kanpur and the district hospital in Kanpur Dehat.

Victims in both the districts were sold same batch of tainted liquor at licensed shops, which officials said was a serious problem that needed a thorough investigation. So far, three arrests have been made.

Reports said Kanpur Dehat victims had bought Madhuri brand of liquor, which is sold all over Uttar Pradesh.

“The excise department is inspecting all liquor shops looking for desi (locally made) liquor sent under batch 442. Liquor of this batch is believed to be poisonous,” Kanpur Dehat district magistrate Rakesh Singh said.

As per wholesale records of Madhuri brand, the liquor wasn’t supplied in Kanpur and Kanpur Dehat under this batch, Kanpur Dehat district Singh said, adding to suspicion that bootleggers could be misusing Madhuri brand.

The shop salesman set the liquor stock on fire after getting to know about the deaths, alleged Kanpur Dehat villagers, who blocked the nearby highway, demanding compensation and the arrest of the accused.

The family of one of the dead, Chunna Kushwaha, allowed a post-mortem examination only after district magistrate Singh and superintend of police Ratan Kant Pandey assured them of action.

Singh said a case was registered against the contractor and salesman of the shop.

Preliminary investigation in Kanpur deaths found that licensed shops in Kanpur and Kanpur Dehat districts were selling illicit liquor.

Police late on Saturday raided a warehouse of one Vinay Singh, a grandson of former minister Ram Swarup Singh Gaur, in Fazalgunj and recovered chemicals and a stock of liquor.

Singh gave himself up to police after Kanpur Dehat deaths. His brother, Neeraj, was arrested Fazalgunj on Sunday in connection with Sachendi deaths. Neeraj had unsuccessfully contested the 2017 assembly election on a Samajwadi party ticket.

An FIR under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the excise act was lodged against Shyam Balak, the licence holder of the Sachendi liquor shop, Kanpur’s senior superintendent of police Akhilesh Kumar said.

Four people were detained and one arrested while Balak was on the run, police said, adding a regional excise inspector was suspended and liquor samples sent for tests.

Chief minister Yogi Adityanath announced an assistance of Rs 2 lakh each to the next of the kin of the dead, an official statement said.

(With agency inputs)