NHRC notice to Bihar govt, state police chief over Saran hooch tragedy | India News – Times of India


NEW DELHI: The National Human Rights Commission has issued notices to the Bihar government and the state’s police chief over the Saran hooch tragedy in which at least 30 people have died, officials said on Friday.
The sale and consumption of alcohol was completely banned in Bihar in April 2016, though its “implementation has been patchy,” the NHRC observed in a statement.
The Saran hooch tragedy toll rose to 30 on Friday, the biggest since Bihar went dry more than six years ago, and it continued to cast a shadow on the state legislature where BJP members disrupted proceedings in both Houses before staging a Raj Bhavan march.
However, unconfirmed reports claimed up to 50 people died by drinking illicitly brewed country liquor.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has “taken suo motu cognisance of the media reports that several people have died after allegedly consuming spurious liquor in Saran district of Bihar,” it said.
The commission has observed that the contents of the media reports, if true, raise concern for human rights.
Apparently, the reported incident “indicates the failure of the state government” on implementation of its policy of prohibition of sale and consumption of illicit or spurious liquor in the state, it said.
Accordingly, it has issued notices to the chief secretary and the director general of police of Bihar, seeking a detailed report, including the status of the FIR registered by the police, medical treatment of the victims who are hospitalised, and compensation, if any, granted to the aggrieved families, the statement said.
The commission would also like to know about the action taken against delinquent officers responsible for the tragedy. The response from the authorities is expected at the earliest but not later than four weeks from the issuance of these orders, it added.
According to the media reports, carried on December 15, the deaths have been reported across three villages under Mashrakh, Ishuapur and Amnaur police stations of Marhaura sub-division in Chhapra area. The police suspect that the villagers might have purchased the liquor from a common shop in these adjoining areas, the statement said.
The family members of the deceased have, reportedly, stated that more than 50 people had consumed country-made liquor, it said.


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