A police inspector was among the four who died in a village in Mehsana district following poisoning, reportedly, due to consuming bhang on Maha Shivratri. At least 350 people are said to have been affected by it.
Mehsana police said that RR Patel, who was posted in Kadi police station, passed away. Among the 350 people, residents of Budasan and Karanpur villages of Kadi taluka, including women and children, took ill after consuming bhang. Police sources said that Patel took it lightly and after primary check up went home where his condition deteriorated.
“We can’t say what caused the death as of now. In his late 40s, Patel was diabetic as well. But he had been affected by food poisoning. I went to see him in the hospital and he was doing fine. But at around 4 AM we learnt that he passed away,” said Deputy Superintendent of Police, Rajesh Gadhiya.
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Earlier on Tuesday three persons including two teenagers identified as Natuji Thakor (14), Vipul Thakor (17) died during the treatment. Local authorities said that situation remains tense given the number of people suffering from the poisoning.
However, Mehsana collector Lochan Sehra said that situation is under control now. He said that about 2500 people had consumed Bhang, the traditional prasad on Shivratri, and about 350 fell sick. He said that a team of doctors are camping in the village and several people whose condition were serious were sent to different hospitals.
“We have taken the cognizance of the matter and sent samples for forensic tests. Primarily the incident has been caused due to Bhang but until we get the scientific report we can’t say what caused the incident for sure,” said Manoj Shashidhar, Gandhinagar Range IG.