Death toll from tainted liquor reaches 94


MUMBAI, India (AP) – Ten more people died in Mumbai from drinking tainted liquor, raising the death toll to 94 in the worst such incident in India in more than a decade, police said Sunday.

The 10 men died late Saturday, three days after drinking the cheap liquor in Malvani, in Mumbai’s Malad suburb. Around 40 others were being treated in hospitals, including 15 in critical condition.

Eight officers and constables of the Malwani police station have been suspended on charges of connivance and negligence, said Deputy Commissioner Dhananjay Kulkarni. No further details were given.

Devendra Fadnavis, the top elected official of Maharashtra state, of which Mumbai is the capital, has ordered an inquiry into the cause of the deaths. Police have collected samples of the spurious liquor and have sent them for analysis.

Deaths from illegally brewed alcohol are common in India because the poor cannot afford licensed liquor. Illicit liquor is often spiked with chemicals such as pesticides to increase its potency.

In 2004, 104 people had died after drinking spurious liquor in Mumbai’s Vikhroli area.

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