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Sunday, Sep 15, 2019

Key accused in hooch tragedy held in Uttarakhand

The father-son duo has told the police during preliminary interrogation that they did not manufacture the liquor, but bought a drum of it of nearly 400 litres from one Arjun, who lives in Tejupur village in Bhagwanpur area, he said. Police are now searching for Arjun, the official said.

india Updated: Feb 12, 2019 07:51 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Haridwar
Family members mourn the death of victims who were poisoned after consuming a spurious liquor, in Saharanpur on February 9.
Family members mourn the death of victims who were poisoned after consuming a spurious liquor, in Saharanpur on February 9.(PTI Photo)
         

A man and his son, who allegedly supplied the spurious liquor that claimed over 100 lives in Uttarakhand and neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, were arrested on Monday from the Jhabrera area of Haridwar district, the police said.

Hardev and Sukhwinder, alias Sukha, residents of Punden village of Saharanpur district in Uttar Pradesh, were arrested by the Uttarkhand Police from near Ekbalpur Fatak in Jhabrera area of the district, SSP Haridwar Janmejay Khanduri told reporters in Roorkee.

The father-son duo has told the police during preliminary interrogation that they did not manufacture the liquor, but bought a drum of it of nearly 400 litres from one Arjun, who lives in Tejupur village in Bhagwanpur area, he said. Police are now searching for Arjun, the official said.

A political storm rocked the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand the over deaths, prompting the two state administrations to intensify their probe.

Alleging that laxity on the part of the UP government led to the tragedy, opposition members created ruckus in the assembly and demanded chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s resignation. The uproar by opposition members — over the incident in Saharanpur and Kushinagar districts last week — led to the adjournment of the entire Question Hour. As soon as the House met, opposition Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party and Congress members tried to raise the matter terming it one of utmost importance.

The Uttar Pradesh government on Sunday constituted a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the hooch deaths that shocked the state and took action against two police officers on charges of dereliction of duty.

The Budget Session of the Uttarakhand Assembly, which began on Monday, also witnessed massive uproar over the deaths. Opposition Congress demanded the dismissal of the Trivendra Singh Rawat government, accusing it of being insensitive to the plight of families which had lost their kin in the hooch tragedy.

The death toll in the twin hooch tragedies in Uttar Pradesh and neighbouring Uttarakhand have crossed 108, with dozens of people still recuperating in various hospitals. More than 200 arrests have been made. Forty-nine cases have been registered in Uttarakhand.

First Published: Feb 12, 2019 00:15 IST