8 dead, 26 ill due to suspected poisoning after consuming liquor

Bhadrak: Eight persons died while 26 others have been taken ill due to suspected poisoning after consuming liquor yesterday night in Tihidi area of Bhadrak. The deceased have been identified as Sadhu Charan Nayak of Nimaisahi, Sarbeswar Das, Baidhar Nayak, Sankarshan Parida, Harihar Jena, Devendra Panda and Ram Chandra Padhiari of Doulatpur village.

According to sources, a group of villagers consumed liquor near Pira Hata area yesterday night and later several of them fell ill. While one of them reportedly died in the village, two others died while undergoing treatment at Bhadrak hospital.

While 15 others have been admitted to Bhadrak hospital, three critically ill have been shifted to SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack.

“It is yet to be clear whether the deceased and other critical patients consumed spurious liquor. Probe has been initiated at the administrative level to ascertain the exact cause of the liquor deaths.” Bhadrak Collector Gyana Das said after taking stock of the situation at Bhadrak hospital.

Meanwhile, following the incident, locals and family members staged a protest on Bhadrak-Chandbali road.

Sources said, the district administration had ordered closure of all liquor shops in the district a day ago, but hours after the directive, the liquor deaths have now raised questions.

Speaking on the liquor deaths, Excise Department Secretary Nikunja Dhal, said, “A joint investigation will be done by Revenue, Health & Police departments. As the incident took place on polling day, we are taking this matter seriously.”