New Delhi: At least five people have died after consuming spurious liquor at a village in Shamli district in last 48 hours. Three people died on Tuesday and two on Wednesday, police said.  Shamli Additional Superintendent of Police Shalok Kumar said the incident happened at Kamalpur village under Jhanjhana police station, which is near the Uttar Pradesh-Haryana border.

The seven people who fell ill allegedly after consuming the spurious liquor have been taken to different hospitals for treatment, but they are in serious condition, Kumar said.

Police said that one of the deceased, 55-year-old Joga Singh, had supplied the alleged spurious liquor and had also himself consumed it. Meanwhile, five policemen have been suspended for negligence in duty.

However, SSP Shamli said, ‘Initially locals said that some of these people had died of some disease or other but now they are saying that this happened due to consumption of illicit liquor. We are investigating the case.’

News Agency ANI reported, Shamli District Magistrate said that 2 bodies have been sent for postmortem. “The man who used to supply illicit liquor is also dead. His family members say that he died of heart attack but locals say that he also died because of consumption of illicit liquor. Things will be clear after we get the report,” he said. He has also ordered an inquiry into the hooch tragedy.

The deceased included Joga Singh (50), Indrapal Singh (55) and Sanjay Singh (28). The victims’ families even refused to lodge any complaint with the police.

A case has been registered against Singh and other unidentified vendors under various sections of Indian Penal Code, including 304A (causing death by negligence) and relevant sections of the Excise Act, they said.

In a similar incident, 10 people died and 16 were taken seriously ill after allegedly consuming spurious liquor in Kanpur district and its neighbouring Kanpur Dehat. Police had arrested 11 people in the incident. Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma had visited Ursula Hospital in Kanpur to meet people who were hospitalised after consuming the illicit liquor and gave Rs 50,000 each as compensation to the victims.

(With PTI inputs)