Again a hooch tragedy claims eight lives in West Bengal, four arrested
Kolkata/Nadia, Nov 28 (IBNS): At least eight persons died and more than 20 others fell sick reportedly after consuming toxic liquor at Santipur in West Bengal's Nadia district on Wednesday.
According to reports, over 30 persons fell ill after having poisonous hooch at Nrisinghapur Chowdhury Para area under Santipur Police Station limits in Nadia on Tuesday evening and they were rushed to nearby hospital where three of them died at night.
Four more persons, who were undergoing treatment at the hospital, were declared dead on Wednesday morning while another sick man died in late evening, taking the death toll to eight, hospital reports said.
"Eight dead persons have been identified as Dularchan Mahato, Bhaloa Mahato, Buto Mahato, Sunil Mahato, Kashinath Mahato, Gautam Sharma, Munna Rai and Basudeb Mahato," a local administrative official told IBNS.
Meanwhile, several persons have reportedly been hospitalized after consuming toxic hooch in East Burdwan district's Kalna area, which is located on the other bank of river Ganges.
Besides announcing an ex-gratia of two lakh rupees each to the next kin of the dead people, state government has handed over the probe into the hooch tragedy to Criminal Investigation Department (CID).
After initiating investigation, state CID has arrested four persons, including two illegal hooch sellers, in connection with the case, according to sources.
"Four suspects, who have been identified as Sadhan Biswas, Jaydeb Santra, Jayanti Mahato and Guchhia Mahato, have been nabbed for reportedly running hooch business illegally at the area," a CID official told IBNS.
Meanwhile, the state government has suspended 11 officials, including an officer-in-charge (OC) of Santipur circle, of excise department pending a departmental inquiry.
Earlier in December in 2011, at least 173 people died after consuming poisonous liquor at Sangrampur and its adjoining areas in South 24 Parganas district of West Bengal.
(Reporting by Deepayan Sinha)