At least 11 persons including two university students died after drinking toxic alcohol in Dhaka and Bogura in two days.
The Department of Narcotics Control said a recent import duty hike on foreign liquors might have increased the consumption of bootleg alcohol, which resulted in the deaths.
On Sunday noon and Monday, three public relations firm employees died after taking spurious liquor at a resort in Gazipur.
Around 40 employees of two firms went on a pleasure trip to the resort on Friday morning. They consumed liquor there and fell ill while returning to Dhaka on Saturday night. They were hospitalised upon their arrival in the capital.
Two of them died while undergoing treatment on Sunday noon while another died on Monday. Until Monday night, at least seven staffers of the firms were undergoing treatment at several hospitals in the city.
An employee, who was on the Gazipur trip, told The Business Standard that they tried to collect imported liquor in Dhaka before heading off to Gazipur.
"We had to buy the liquor in Gazipur since the Dhaka bars were empty," he claimed.
On Sunday night, at least six people died after consuming toxic liquor in northern Bangladesh district Bogura.
Bogura victims collected liquors from homeopathy shop
Bogura police said four people drank the liquor, collected from a homeopathy medicine shop, at a wedding ceremony at Tinmatha on Sunday night. Subsequently, they fell sick and two of them died at Shaheed Ziaur Rahman Medical College and a local clinic.
In the meantime, another four died in Bhoberbazar, Katnapara and Fulbari area of the district on Sunday night after drinking spurious liquor.
Humayun Kabir, officer-in-charge of Bogura Sadar Police Station, told TBS that police were investigating each of the incidents.
While contacted, Dulal Krishna Saha, chief chemical examiner of the Department of Narcotics Control, said many chemical traders are producing the liquors at different places illegally to meet the demand caused by the supply crunch of foreign liquor.
A source at the department told TBS that a huge amount of imported liquor has remained stuck at Chattogram port as the warehouses did not receive those from the port.
"The warehouses are not receiving the imported brands as they are unwilling to pay the hiked duty," added the source.
Law enforcers in September last year seized a huge amount of homemade brew in Dhaka's Lalbagh area.
Alcohol consumption allegedly kills female student, her friend
A day after the death of a female private university student in the capital, doctors at Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College Hospital on Monday said they found no signs of forced sex as alleged by her father.
On Thursday, five youths including the victim went to a restaurant in Dhaka's Uttara. There, they made her drink alcohol, according to a police case. As she fell sick, they took the girl to one of her friends' house in Mohammadpur.
When the victim's physical condition deteriorated, the youths took her to a city hospital where she died on Sunday.
While investigating the case, cops Monday found that one of the friends of the deceased who took her to the Uttara restaurant had already died at a city hospital early Monday.