Chitrakoot (UP), Mar 22 (PTI) Eight officials have so far been suspended and a village watchman dismissed as another man died in this district due to consumption of spurious liquor, taking the toll to five, police said on Monday.
The incident took place in Khopa village and the first death was recorded on Saturday, according to police.
So far, five villagers have died while two others are in a serious condition and undergoing treatment at a hospital in Allahabad, Inspector General of Police, Chitrakoot Dham (Range), K Satya Narayan said on Monday.
Eight officials, including the SDM, DSP and district excise officer have been suspended in this connection and four people arrested, the IG said.
While Sita Ram (60) died in the village on Saturday night, Munna Singh (40) succumbed at a private hospital on Sunday morning, the IG said. Satyam (22) and Durvijay Singh (32) died while being taken to Allahabad on Sunday. Babli Singh (38) died late Sunday night at a hospital in Allahabad, police said.
Former gram pradhan Manohar and Vivek are undergoing treatment at a hospital, he said.
Taking a serious view of the incident, the government suspended Rajapur Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Rahul Kashyap Vishwakarma, DSP Ram Prakash, District Excise Officer Chatar Sen and Excise Inspector Ashraf Ali Siddiqui till late Sunday night, the IG said.
Besides, Sub-Inspector (SI) Brijesh Pandey, two constables including Bhupendra Singh, lekhpal Rajesh Kumar have been suspended, he said.
The village watchman, Sunil Kumar, has been dismissed, the official said.
The IG said liquor contractor Ram Prakash Yadav, general merchant shop owner in Khopa village Trilok Singh and two others have been arrested while liquor shop and general merchant shop have been sealed.
To a question, the IG said detailed investigations are on and whether the liquor was spurious or not will be known only after the report is received.
He said the matter has been taken seriously and all those found involved in it would be punished.
The IG had on Sunday said that upon preliminary inquiry, it has come to light that the victims consumed country-made liquor on Saturday, after which they fell sick.
There is no liquor sale outlet in the village, and the booze was brought from a shop located almost 15 kilometres away, the IG had said. PTI COR SAB CK