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`Illicit' liquor claims three lives

Staff Reporter

20 taken ill, residents ransack bar at Swatantrapalya where the brew was served



GRIEF-STRICKEN: Relatives of the liquor tragedy victims wailing at K.C. General Hospital in Bangalore on Thursday. — Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

BANGALORE: At least three persons died and 20 others were taken ill after consuming suspected illicit liquor at a bar and restaurant at Swatantrapalya in Srirampuram police station limits on Thursday evening.

The victims, most of them daily wage earners, reportedly went to the bar at around 7.30 p.m. after work. But minutes after consuming liquor served there, many fell unconscious while others complained of severe stomach pain and started vomiting.

They were rushed to K.C. General Hospital and other private hospitals. Three of the victims, Dasappa (60), Rajesh Kumar (25) and Chandrashekhar alias Rambo (35) died at the K.C. General Hospital.

While Dasappa and Chandrashekhar were daily wage workers, Rajesh Kumar was a videographer employed by a Srirampura-based studio unit.

Two others, Vijay and Rudresh, were rushed to M.S. Ramaiah Hospital, where they could not be admitted because the Intensive Care Unit was full. Hospital sources said the two were in critical condition. The incident triggered an angry response from the residents of Swatantrapalya, who allegedly ransacked the bar.

The bar owners fled the scene. The Srirampuram police have taken up a case and are on the look out for them.

Shaken by the tragic turn of events, the victims' relatives thronged the K.C. General Hospital.

The angry men blamed the hospital for not taking timely action and instead interrogating them about the incident.

The relatives said they had rushed the affected persons to the hospitals within minutes after the incident in autorickshaws, but precious time was lost in responding to hospital staff's queries.

Twenty-four people died after taking spurious liquor in Nelamangala in Bangalore rural district limits in April last year.

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