Islamabad: At least 17 people have died in the last four days after consuming toxic liquor in Pakistan's Sindh province, media report said Friday.
Around 150 people have been arrested in connection with the sale and purchase of toxic liquor.
The majority of the deaths have taken place in Hyderabad's Katchi Abadis and nearby rural localities, Express Tribune reported.
A police spokesman said that the regional excise director and seven SHOs have been suspended for negligence. Six patients are undergoing treatment for consumption of the liquor and officials say the unconfirmed number of deaths are almost double the official toll of 17.
Police have lodged 20 FIRs and nominated 22 suspects in the case, some of whom have been named in multiple FIRs, in eight police stations. DIG Hyderabad Dr Sanaullah Abbasi said that he warned the SHOs that they will not only be suspended if the moonshine liquor outlets or casualties are found in their area, but will also be jailed.
Secretary, Excise Abdul Majeed Pathan said he has sacked the regional director Agha Abdur Rehman from his post.
"Our intelligence team will map out the illegal liquor sales locations and this will be followed by a province-wide crackdown," he said. He added that sale and consumption of liquor is rampant in Sukkur, Badin, Thatta, Tharparkar, Sanghar and many other districts.