The number of deaths due to poisonous alcohol in Indian Punjab has risen to 86. Chief Minister Amrinder Singh has ordered a special inquiry into the incident.
The AFP news agency quoted Indian officials as saying the killings had taken place in the past few days.
According to Indian TV channel NDTV, the tremors took place in three districts of the northern state. Police have arrested 25 people in this connection. Authorities have suspended seven excise departments and six police officers.
An official told to media that 11 people were killed in the Gurdaspur district. According to the Press Trust of India, 12 people were killed in Amritsar and 63 in Tarn Tarn district.
Other deaths have been suspected in recent days, but this could not be ascertained as the bodies were not autopsied. Chief Minister Amrinder Singh said in a statement that “a special inquiry into the killings has been ordered and whoever is found guilty will not be released.” A suspect died of illegal drinking in Amritsar district, The Indian Express reported. His wife has been arrested for selling alcohol.
Remember that thousands of people in India die every year from poisoning. Indigenous liquor is sold for Rs. 10 per liter.
Earlier, ten people were killed in Andhra Pradesh, India, for allegedly drinking sanitizer when alcohol was not available.
According to the Press Trust of India, police SP Siddharth Koshal said that the deceased had been using sanitizer with water and soft drinks for a few days instead of alcohol.
According to NDTV, seven excise and six police officials have been suspended since the incident.
Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal said in a statement that “the Chief Minister should resign while accepting moral responsibility for this horrific incident.”
He further said that the order of inquiry issued by the Chief Minister at the level of Magistrate has to be revoked. The matter should be investigated independently by the High Court.