At least five people died and two others were hospitalized at Haragchha of Kaunia upazila in Rangpur district after reportedly drinking locally-made alcohol.
Amrul Islam, 40, of Dhumgara village, Anarul alias medical, 44 Kalentari village and Nur Amin driver, 43, of West Poddarpara village died at their residences while Ezarul Islam, 38, from Milonbazar and Fulbabu, 52, died at the hospital, over the last three days.
Obaidul, 47, of Kashaihati village is undergoing treatment at home while Chan Mia, 36, from Kalentari village is taking treatment at the Rangpur Medical College Hospital (RMCH).
According to locals, the seven people fell sick soon after drinking alcohol.
“My husband complained of severe headache Monday night. We first treated him at home but later admitted him to the RMCH where his condition deteriorated,” said Gulshan Ara, wife of dead Fulbabu.
Family members of the deceased claimed the people died of brain stroke and not from the alcohol.
Ezarul’s brother Ala Mia told the Business Standard that Ezarul had stopped drinking and claimed his brother had died of brain stroke.
Rangpur Metropolitan Police Officer-in-Charge (OC, Operation) Rabiul Islam said that none of the family members made complaints about the incident.
Meanwhile, police raided the Charchatura area after being informed about the incident from locals, he said, adding that the dealer Nazmul went into hiding soon after the incident.
Assistant Police Commissioner of Rangpur Metropolitan Police (Mahiganj zone) Faruq Ahmed said necessary measures will be taken after investigation.
Head of Neurosurgery Department of RMCH Dr Tofael Hossain Bhuiyan was not reachable when our correspondent tried to contact him over phone.
Recent deaths due to drinking toxic liquor
Two students of Rajshahi University and a Rusina engineer died of ‘alcohol poisoning’ in separate incident on April 7, 2019.
According to hospital sources, they died allegedly after drinking toxics.
Three women died after taking excessive liquor in Munshiganj on February 9, 2019.
Gajaria police station OC Harun Ur Rashid confirmed the news.
Three people died due to alcohol poisoning in Jhenaidah’s Kaliganj on October 20, 2018.
Three people have died after taking alcoholic drink in Dhaka’s Mugda on December 14, 2017.
Mugda Police Station OC Enamul Haque said: “We are checking which type of drink they took, from where they collected it and who supplied it.”
Five people died after consuming toxic alcohol in Pirgachha upazila of Rangpur in between October 31 and Nov 1, 2016.
Nine people died in the incident of toxic liquor consumption in Rangpur city in between September 28 to October 1, 2015.
Thirteen people died after drinking local alcohol in between August 20 and August 21, 2010 in Sylhet.
Osmaninagar police Chief Nirmulendu Chakrabarti acknowledging the deaths said: "They might have taken home-made low quality alcohol since an anti-drugs police operation has been going on over the last few days."
Ninety-six people died after drinking illegal home-made liquor in Narsingdi on May 9, 1999.
This is so far the country's worst case of alcohol poisoning.