Spu­ri­ous liquor claims 70 lives in Ut­tarak­hand, UP

Deccan Chronicle - - Nation -

Haridwar/Sa­ha­ran­pur, Feb. 9: The death toll in the hooch tragedy that hit two ad­join­ing dis­tricts in Ut­tarak­hand and Ut­tar Pradesh has risen to 70 with more peo­ple dy­ing of the spu­ri­ous liquor they drank at a Haridwar vil­lage, of­fi­cials said Satur­day.

The vis­cera ex­am­i­na­tion on 11 more bod­ies is yet to be con­ducted to find out if these too were al­co­hol­re­lated deaths.

Twenty-four of the vic­tims died in Balupur and its neigh­bour­ing vil­lages in Ut­tarak­hand’s Haridwar district, state’s Ad­di­tional Di­rec­tor Gen­eral (Law and Or­der) Ashok Ku­mar said.

At least 46 oth­ers, who had come home to the ad­join­ing Sa­ha­ran­pur district in Ut­tar Pradesh after drink­ing the spu­ri­ous liquor in Balupur on Thurs­day night, are also dead.

Ut­tar Pradesh of­fi­cials said 35 of the Sa­ha­ran­pur deaths took place in the district it­self. Eleven other vic­tims, who were re­ferred from Sa­ha­ran­pur for med­i­cal treat­ment in Meerut, died at a hos­pi­tal there.

In Ut­tarak­hand, about 20 more peo­ple are still un­der treat­ment.

Most of the vic­tims had con­sumed the liquor Thurs­day evening after the ‘tehravin’, the 13th day of mourn­ing rit­ual, fol­low­ing a rel­a­tive’s death in Balupur, of­fi­cials said.

Ut­tar Pradesh po­lice, how­ever, added that a Sa­ha­ran­pur district res­i­dent may have brought 30 pouches of the same liquor from Ut­tarak­hand for sale back home.

This may have led to more ca­su­al­ties, of­fi­cial said, but the in­ves­ti­ga­tion into this is still on. Both states have sus­pended ad­min­is­tra­tive and po­lice of­fi­cials for al­leged neg­li­gence and or­dered probes.

They have also an­nounced ex-gra­tia com­pen­sa­tion of `2 lakh each for the fam­i­lies of those killed.

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