Lucknow: With 15 more deaths reported early Saturday, the toll rose to 37 in the illicit liquor tragedy in Uttar Pradesh's Azamgarh district, making it one of the worst hooch tragedies in the state, police said.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav suspended 10 people, including the district excise inspector Om Prakash Singh. The state government also ordered a magisterial probe into the incident.
Vishvanath Yadav, the station house officer (SHO) of Mubarakpur, where the incidents took place, was suspended along with beat sub-inspector Rajdev Yadav, constables Pradeep Kumar Yadav, Ramesh Chandra Upadhyaya, Parmanand Yadav and Banke Lal.
Most of the deceased come from lower sections and labour class, officials said.
District Magistrate, Neena Sharma said prima facie the case appeared to be related to the consumption of rectified spirit.
Officials on condition of anonymity said at many local shops, rectified spirit mixed with water was being sold unchecked and at cheap rates.
While moonshine has 42 percent of alcohol, the rectified spirit has intensity varying between 90-95 per cent.
"This is a killer concoction," an official said.
A dozen people had died in Azamgarh in 2008 in a similar hooch tragedy while six people had died in Soyepur village in Varanasi in 2010.