39 die, dozens sick in India from drinking spurious liquor:The Asahi Shimbun

Indian police gather around containers of bootleg alcohol in 2017

In Rorkee of Haridwar district in Uttarakhand the death toll has risen to 28 and many others are hospitalized.

Indian officials and local media say there are still several people falling sick after drinking cheap spurious liquor that already killed dozens of people, most of whom from the village of Balpur in Uttarakhand. Authorities launched a crackdown and suspended police and officials.

Eight more deaths were reported in another tragedy blamed on tainted liquor in Kushinagar, also in Uttar Pradesh.

Alok Kumar Pandey, district magistrate, said a feast had taken place where several of the deaths occurred. The villagers drank the tainted liquor Thursday.

Two men who consumed bootleg alcohol, sit on a hospital bed as relatives look on, in Saharanpur, northern state of Uttar Pradesh, India February 11, 2019. 509 quarters of country-made liquor and 91 litres raw liquor has been seized from them, said an official.

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In a neighbouring district a senior police officer said nine had died, adding that 66 suspected bootleggers had been arrested and samples of the liquor sent to a laboratory for testing.

Authorities in the region also suspended over 30 officials, including 10 policemen, on charges of negligence or collusion in the illicit trade.

According to the National Crime Bureau around 1,000 people die in India each year after consuming illegally-brewed alcohol. Illicit liquor is cheap and often spiked with chemicals such as pesticides to increase potency.

In 2015, more than 100 people died in a Mumbai slum after drinking illegal moonshine.

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