Toxic home brew kills 16 in India

2012-01-01 22:00
New Delhi - An official says at least 16 people have died after drinking a toxic home-brewed liquor over the weekend in southern India.

Gaurav Uppal, a top district administrator, says another 24 poor villagers are being treated in hospitals in the Krishna district in Andhra Pradesh state.

Seven people died soon after drinking the illegally brewed alcohol on Saturday and another nine lost their lives on Sunday, the Press Trust of India news agency quoted Uppal as saying.

Uppal could not be reached immediately for comment. The region is nearly 1 600km south of New Delhi.

The victims were poor labourers looking for a cheap means of intoxication.

Deaths from drinking illegally brewed alcohol are common in India since the poor cannot afford licensed liquor.

The illicit liquor is often spiked with pesticides or chemicals to increase its potency.

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