New Delhi: The death toll number in the matter of consumption of poisonous liquor in Madhya Pradesh’s Morena district has climbed to 20 on Wednesday. Many others are reportedly ill after drinking what is suspected to be spurious liquor. Meanwhile, an investigation in the tragedy has been ordered and four government officials, including policemen, have also been suspended. Also Read - Curfew, Prohibitory Orders Imposed in Parts of Bhopal | Here's Why

Earlier on Tuesday, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan held a high-level meeting over the incident and ordered a thorough probe into the deaths. He also said the spurious liquor tragedy in Morena district was extremely sad and unfortunate. Also Read - MP Shocker: 9 Men Rape 13-year-old Girl in Umaria, Horrifying Details Emerge

“The Morena incident is very unfortunate and tragic. The investigation of the case is going on. The District Excise Officer has been suspended for prima facie negligence. As soon as the remaining facts of the investigation come out, whoever is found guilty will not be spared. We will take drastic action,” Chouhan said in a tweet. Also Read - 15-Year-Old Girls Can Procreate, So Why Raise Age For Marriage, Says MP Congress MLA; NCPCR Issues Notice

As per preliminary reports, some residents of Manpur and Pahawali villages in Morena district consumed a white- coloured liquor on Monday night, said a senior police official. Later, people in some other nearby villages also fell ill after consuming suspected spurious liquor, he said.

Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Rajesh Hingankar said, “Fourteen persons have died and 20 others taken seriously ill after drinking suspected spurious liquor (in Morena district).”

This was the second hooch tragedy in Madhya Pradesh in the last three months. In October, 14 people died after drinking spurious liquor in Ujjain.

The DIG said a case has been registered under section 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and sections 34 and 91 of the Excise Act.

A few persons have been rounded up for investigation in the case, he said.

A post-mortem report is awaited to ascertain whether the liquor consumed by the victims was poisonous or not, the officer added.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan termed the incident as “tragic” and ordered suspension of the Morena district excise officer for negligence.

The DIG informed that two more policemen – a sub- inspector and a head constable – were also suspended in connection with the tragedy.

Reacting to incident, State Congress president Kamal Nath hit out at the Chouhan-led BJP government over the incident. He alleged that the chief minister has been making false claims about action against mafias operating in the state.

“Liquor mafia continues to wreak havoc, after killing 16 in Ujjain, now they have killed about 10 people in Morena. Shivraj ji, how long will the liquor mafia keep killing people like this? The government should provide proper treatment to the sick and help the affected families in every way possible,” Nath said in a tweet.