More heads roll as UP hooch tragedy toll rises to five

The tragedy struck a small village in Chitrakoot district on Sunday wherein five villagers died and as many were left critically ill due to consumption of spurious liquor.

Published: 22nd March 2021 04:51 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd March 2021 04:51 PM   |  A+A-

alcohol, prohibition, liquor

For representational purposes (Express Illustrations)

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh government has suspended 10 officials including a sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) and the circle officer (CO) in connection with the Chitrakoot hooch tragedy on Monday.

The tragedy struck a small village in Chitrakoot district on Sunday wherein five villagers died and as many were left critically ill due to consumption of spurious liquor.

Cracking the whip after the tragedy, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath suspended 10 officials and employees of the local administration and excise department, including SDM, Rajapur, Kashyap Vishwakarma, CO, Rajapur, Ramprakash and district excise officer Chatar Sen.

The incident led the police to raid the hooch dens across the district throughout Sunday nabbing two accused -- a peddler and an illegal liquor outlet owner.

The five deceased have been identified as Munna Singh, Sitaram, Satyendra, Durvijay Singh, and Babbli Singh.

Other critically ill villagers were shifted to a hospital in Prayagraj, said the police sources. The tragedy struck after the villagers indulged in a revelry savouring fish and booze ahead of panchayat polls in Khopa village under Rajapur police station. After the revelries, the villagers started complaining of
dizziness and acute abdominal pain.

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Suddenly, Sitaram dropped dead on the spot. The villagers then rushed Munna, Satyendra, and Durvijay ad Babbli Singh rush to the district hospital. While Munna died on the way, the other three succumbed during treatment. Chitrakoot Dham (range) IG PK Satya Narayan said SI Brijesh Pandey and constable Bhupendra were suspended.

According to Chitrakoot SP Ankit Mittal, who rushed to the affected village along with DM Shubhrant Shukla, the spurious liquor was procured by one Trilok from an authorized outlet owned by one RP Yadav. Both Trilok and Yadav fled the village after the tragedy. However, both Trilok, nephew of deceased Munna, and Trilok were nabbed Sunday evening. 

An FIR was lodge against the two accused under relevant sections of the IPC and Excise Act. Yadav’s shop was sealed and autopsy reports of the deceased were awaited, said the SP.

By Sunday afternoon, bulldozers began rolling out with police teams, which seized 5,000 litres of hooch and 2,000 litres of raw material. Others who were suspended for laxity included SI Brijesh Pandey, beat constable, Rajapur, Bhupendra Singh, and the accountant Rajesh Singh. Services of village chowkidar,
Khopa, Sunil Kumar, has also been terminated.

Earlier, the excise department had already suspended inspector Ashraf Ali and two excise constables Sushil Pandey and Sandeep Kumar. A departmental probe had also been initiated against them.


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