KOLKATA, 4th January, 2009: At least 13 people died and 25 fell sick after drinking poisonous country-made liquor here, police said today. “Three persons died late yesterday night. Ten more have died today after consuming poisonous country-made liquor at West Port area near Khidderpore in south-west Kolkata. At least 25 people have been admitted to three hospitals in critical condition,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Jawed Shamim told reporters here.
Four people have been arrested and raids were underway in several parts of Kolkata to catch the culprits, Shamim said. According to police sources, there are over 20 illegal country liquor shops in the area. “We have raided the shops and collected liquor samples to detect the exact nature of poison in them. All bodies will be sent for postmortem examination. An investigation has started and right action will be taken against the culprits,” Shamim said.
Earlier, Special Additional Police Commissioner Debasis Roy said seven people, including three women, were detained for selling poisonous country-made liquor.According to police sources, many slum dwellers in the area are addicted to drinking and they get the liquor from the local shops.But the men who bought and drank the country-made liquor on Saturday night fell sick immediately. While some died after acute stomach ache, many were admitted to hospitals in critical condition. State Minister Manab Mukherjee and Trinamul Congress chief Mamata Banerjee visited the area in the evening to console the family members of the victims and the sick.