Act, don’t play with words: EPS to TN govt in hooch deaths

In his statement, the AIADMK leader extended his condolences to the grieving families.
The victims undergoing treatment at Kallakurichi hospital
The victims undergoing treatment at Kallakurichi hospital (Photo | Express)

CHENNAI: Terming the death of people after drinking illicit liquor in Karunapuram in Kallakurichi as worrying, AIADMK general secretary and leader of the opposition Edappadi K Palaniswami condemned the DMK government on Wednesday for failing to curb the production of illicit liquor. He urged Chief Minister MK Stalin to ‘avoid playing with words’ by saying it is ‘methanol’ and not ‘illicit liquor’, and to keep in mind that it is a matter of people’s lives.

In his statement, the AIADMK leader extended his condolences to the grieving families. “I have been continuously pointing out that the production of illicit liquor is rampant under the DMK regime. However, the government has not taken any action to curb it, even after several lives have been lost due to it,” he alleged.

Meanwhile, PMK founder S Ramadoss blamed the district administration for attempting to cover up the incompetency of the government by initially stating the deaths were not related to illicit liquor. “It is a known fact that illicit liquor is produced in the Kalvarayan hill area round-the-clock and is supplied throughout the district. The situation is so worse that arrack is even supplied in chocolate flavour,” he alleged.

He also recalled incidents in which two people dying allegedly after consuming liquor from Tasmac outlets in Thanjavur and more than 30 people losing lives after drinking illicit liquor in Mathuranthakam and Marakanam last year.

He added the consumption of liquor is causing law and order problems, and the CM, who also handles the home department, should take responsibility for these incidents. Ramadoss demanded the government provide Rs 10 lakh to the families of the deceased and ensure proper medical care for the others affected.

On X, formerly Twitter, BJP state president Annamalai said it is heart-wrenching to see the parents cry out of pain about losing their child and a wife losing her husband. “DMK has not learnt lesson after the 22 hooch deaths last year, and their mis-governance has led to more deaths today. There is zero accountability in the DMK government and ministers do not fear consequences for posing with illicit liquor sellers,” he said.

Naam Tamilar Katchi (NTK) chief coordinator Seeman said the deaths due to illicit liquor are the ‘achievement’ of the three-year tenure of the DMK government. He criticised the DMK stating its ‘achievements’ are increasing Tasmac sales and failing to curb drugs. “The DMK expresses pride in supporting women by giving them Rs 1,000 every month. What will they now say to the women who have lost their husbands, fathers, and sons?” he questioned.

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