At least 14 people,mostly dock workers,died after consuming spurious liquor in the Kidderpore Docks area of the city on Sunday. Two persons are battling for life in hospital. Senior Kolkata Police officers said the liquor was supplied at outlets in the Jain Kunj area,off Hyde Road,on Saturday night and its effect started showing by early next morning.
Deputy Commissioner (Detective Department) Jawed Shamim,who led a house-to-house search to round up country liquor sellers in the area,said a man and three women have been detained for selling the spurious liquor. He said investigations were on to ascertain the source of the liquor. Samples have been sent for forensic tests. The interrogation of the arrested persons should provide us with necessary leads. Raids are on in the area,and will continue through the night, he added.
The Jain Kunj area is populated by daily wagers,dock hands and small-time mechanics. Prabhunath Rai,whose brother Pradip (26) was among the dead,said: This morning,I found him sleeping at home. He woke up and complained of severe abdominal pain. We rushed him to hospital,but he died an hour later. He has a wife and two small children back in Bihar. We have not yet informed them, Rai said. Sushila,the mother of one of the victims,died of cardiac arrest within hours of hearing about the tragedy.
Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee,who visited the houses of the victims,announced that her party would give Rs 10,000 each to the families of the victims.