Toxic al­co­hol kills 12 in In­dia

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

LUCKNOW: A dozen peo­ple have died af­ter drink­ing toxic home­made al­co­hol in Ut­tar Pradesh state, po­lice said yes­ter­day, the lat­est in­ci­dent of boot­leg booze killing In­dian drinkers. Po­lice in the north­ern state said vic­tims com­plain­ing of se­vere stom­ach pain fell se­ri­ously ill af­ter con­sum­ing a batch of il­licit moon­shine last Thurs­day. “Twelve per­sons have died af­ter (the) con­sump­tion of spu­ri­ous liquor,” Ajay Kumar Sahni, the po­lice chief in Aza­m­garh dis­trict, said.

Po­lice ar­rested 21 peo­ple, in­clud­ing the main sus­pect be­hind the toxic brew, he added. At least four other vic­tims were still in hos­pi­tal un­der­go­ing treat­ment. Au­thor­i­ties in the state dis­man­tled 30 back­yard moon­shine op­er­a­tions, seized 1,100 liters of il­le­gal liquor and de­stroyed 10,000 liters of the hooch, the Press Trust of In­dia re­ported. In re­sponse, Ut­tar Pradesh chief min­is­ter Yogi Adityanath sus­pended eight dis­trict of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing three po­lice of­fi­cers, for ne­glect of duty, ac­cord­ing to PTI. Boot­leg liquor is widely con­sumed across In­dia, where a bot­tle is some­times sold for less than a dol­lar.

Deaths are fre­quently re­ported, with boot­leg­gers of­ten found adding methanol-a highly toxic form of al­co­hol some­times used as an anti-freeze-in their brews to in­crease its strength. If in­gested, methanol can cause blind­ness, liver dam­age and death in larger con­cen­tra­tions. In 2015, more than 100 peo­ple died in a Mum­bai slum died af­ter drink­ing il­le­gal moon­shine. Of the es­ti­mated 5 bil­lion liters of al­co­hol drunk ev­ery year in In­dia, around 40 per­cent is il­le­gally brewed, ac­cord­ing to the In­ter­na­tional Spir­its and Wine As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dia.—AFP

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