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Pakistan hooch toll crosses 40

Another 14 people have died after consumption of spurious liquor in Karachi, taking the toll to 41.

world Updated: Sep 22, 2007 16:02 IST

Another 14 people have died after consumption of spurious liquor in Pakistan's southern port city of Karachi, taking the toll to 41, police said on Saturday.

Some 70 people from Mithadar and Railway Colony areas of the city had consumed the toxic liquor and started reporting to different hospitals since Thursday morning. Twenty-seven people died on Thursday and Friday.

"I can confirm that 14 more people have died from intake of the contaminated liquor. We have had a total of 41 deaths and some of the hospitalised are still in serious condition," Deputy Inspector General of Police Javed Bokhari told PTI.

Twenty-seven people remain admitted in hospitals.

A doctor at a government hospital treating some of the affected people said several of them had lost their eyesight.

The men, who apparently took the liquor to celebrate some occasion, belong to low-income group families.

Azhar Farooqi, the city police chief, said six persons, including a policeman, have been arrested in this connection.

"We have also busted several illegal bootlegging factories and are carrying out a sweep in the city," Farooqi said.

Though alcohol consumption and sale is banned in Pakistan for Muslims, the minority non-Muslims are allowed to buy and use alcohol from specially designated government outlets.

First Published: Sep 22, 2007 12:14 IST