11 die over three days after drinking hooch in Bihar

Eleven people, including two brothers, have so far died in Saran in the past three days due to consumption of spurious countrymade liquor.

About a dozen others are being treated at Saran and Patna hospitals with complications of vomiting, stomachache and blurred eyesight.

This is the sixth major hooch tragedy since November. Around 90 people have died so far in Gopalganj, East Champaran, Nawada, Nalanda and Saran because of illicit liquor consumption. However, in a major jolt to the state government, the Patna High Court recently acquitted all nine accused of the 2016 Gopalganj hooch case in which 19 people had died.

On Friday, Saran District Magistrate Rajesh Meena confirmed hooch deaths. He said post-mortem reports would give further clarity.

The incident took place at two villages under police stations of Bheldi and Maker between Wednesday and Thursday night after reports of around 25 people complaining of vomiting and blurred vision surfaced. They had consumed spurious alcohol, purchased from a local supplier.

While some people died at Aadar Hospital, Chhapra, or at their homes, over a dozen are being treated at Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH).

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Phulwa Devi, who lost her son Kamal Mahto, told police that he  had consumed illicit liquor with others. Most victims are from lower income group families.

A doctor said: “It looks like a clear case of illicit liquor consumption.”

Saran police have so far arrested one person for selling illicit liquor. Police suspected the liquor could have been manufactured at local level.

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