Twin hooch tragedy: UP govt forms SIT, asks to submit report in 10 days
Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh government, on Sunday night, constituted a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the hooch deaths case that claimed over 100 lives in Saharanpur and Kushinagar. The team has been directed to submit its report within 10 days.
The state government also suspended Ram Krishan Tiwari, the deputy superintendent of police (DSP) in Kushinagar district’s Tamkuhriaj, and Siddharth, the Deputy superintendent of police in Saharanpur’s Deoband.
Tiwari and Siddharth were suspended as they failed to take effective measures to check the manufacture and sale of the illicit liquor. The Uttar Pradesh government has also ordered a magisterial inquiry into the tragedy.
The death toll in the twin hooch tragedies in Uttar Pradesh and neighbouring Uttarakhand has reached to 108, with dozens of people still recuperating in various hospitals, officials said on Sunday.
A total of 73 deaths have been reported in Uttar Pradesh — 62 in Saharanpur and Meerut districts, and 11 in Kushinagar.
The unfortunate incident took place when the victims in UP visited Balupur in Uttarakhand’s Roorkie on February 7 for a funeral after which they consumed the illicit liquor, police officials said.
A total of 215 persons have been arrested, and cases have been filed against 297 people. Forty-nine cases have been registered in Uttarakhand.
The angry family members of the victims, on Sunday, came out on the streets and blocked roads in protest, alleging negligence by officials in providing medical treatment to those who have taken ill.
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra demanded that the BJP governments in the two states should ensure strict punishment to those responsible for the tragedy and provide proper compensation to the families of the deceased.
Priyanka Gandhi said it was unimaginable that the business of illegal liquor was being run on such a large scale.
“I am extremely distressed to hear about such a tragic incident and express my deepest condolences to the family members of the deceased persons,” she said in a statement.
Bahujan Samaj Party leader Mayawati criticized Yogi-led state government saying, “The tragedy is not only unfortunate but also heart-rending and shameful,” she tweeted.
On Sunday in a police crackdown, 9,269 litres of hooch was seized in Uttar Pradesh and 1,066 litres was recovered from Uttarakhand, according to sources.