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Wednesday, March 03, 2021

When alcohol gushed out of taps in apartment complex in Kerala town

Earlier this week, a resident of the Solomon's Avenue apartment complex in the heart of the town woke up to find a strange smell emanating out of the taps in his home.

By: Express Web Desk | Kochi |
Updated: February 6, 2020 5:49:21 pm
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In Kerala, one can always find tipplers waiting in long queues in front of liquor shops to get their hands on their favourite brand of booze. If anything, their wildest fantasy could be to find alcohol dripping out of the taps in their home. And that’s exactly what happened to the residents of an apartment complex in the town of Chalakkudy in Thrissur district but clearly they weren’t amused.

Earlier this week, a resident of the Solomon’s Avenue apartment complex in the heart of the town woke up to find a strange smell emanating out of the taps in his home. On opening them, brownish water gushed out with a conspicuous stench of alcohol. When he checked with other residents of the complex, they reported the same. The residents then trooped to the office of the local municipality, filing complaints with the health department asking for a probe on how alcohol came to be mixed with water and got supplied through their household taps.

And when the local body officials went looking, they discovered that a few days ago, a team of excise officials had destroyed nearly 6,000 litres of all kinds of liquor including brandy, rum and whisky just next door to the residential complex by digging a pit and pouring the liquor into it. The liquor had been seized from a bar several years ago and ordered to be destroyed by a local court.

“The excise officials clearly didn’t check if a well existed within the apartment complex next door. So the alcohol they poured into a pit percolated through the soil and got mixed with the water of the well. The same water was pumped into the overhead tank of the apartment complex and finally into each of the flats,” said councillor VJ Joji.

Chalakkudy municipality vice-chairman Wilson Panattuparambil said the local body has provided two new water connections to the residential complex so that they don’t have to depend on the water from the well. They will also continuously pump water into the well every day till it becomes clean and safe to use.

Deputy Excise Commissioner TK Sanu said an investigation by the department is ongoing and no action has been taken yet against the officers who destroyed the seized liquor.

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