Balasore: Officials of Excise Department arrested two persons in Balasore district on Wednesday night on charges of selling spurious liquor.
Acting on a tip off, a team of the Excise department led by Excise Inspector, Jagdish Chandra Samal conducted a raid in Simulia area of the district and arrested Suresh Kumar Mohanty and Ajit Mohanty. Both the accused are reportedly residents of Syamasundarpur village.
“We arrested Suresh Kumar Mohanty and Ajit Mohanty after a raid last night. We also recovered 50 litres of spirit, 130 litres of spurious foreign liquor and some other raw materials and equipment,” said Jagdish Chandra Samal.
Suresh Kumar Mohanty said, “We used to sell each bottle for Rs 70-80. People especially from rural area used to buy liquor from us.”
Meanwhile, Suresh and Ajit have been forwarded to the court and further investigation is underway.
Earlier in November last year, one person died while over 20 others fell ill after allegedly consuming spurious country-made liquor at Kataguda village in Kalyansinghpur area of Rayagada district.
As per reports, around 30 people fell sick after they consumed liquor and developed symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting and swelling in abdomen. Taking a serious note of the incident, Rayagada district collector had ordered a probe into the matter. While the locals held the Excise department responsible for the liquor tragedy, the Excise officials had claimed that the incident took place due to food poisoning. “They did not consume the wine from any of the licensed liquor units. They consumed country-made liquor and fell sick due to food poising,” Excise officials had informed.
Amid such tragedies, anti-liquor protests are on the rise in Odisha. Last year in November, as many as 50 women of a Self Help Group (SHG) seized a foreign liquor-laden truck on Chilika-Nuapada road in Puri and destroyed alcohol bottles in an anti-liquor drive.