Karachi: At least 24 people have died and 12 others are battling for their lives after consuming toxic country-made liquor on Eid festival in Pakistan's financial capital.
"So far there have been 24 deaths and we have around 15 more people under treatment and the condition of 12 of these are critical," Dr Seemi Jamali, Medico Legal Officer at Karachi's Jinnah Hospital told PTI today.
Jamali said the patients were brought from low-income areas of Katchi Abadis in Landhi, Malir, Korangi and Manzoor Colony since yesterday.
Many of the victims were Muslims who were celebrating the three-day public holiday over Eid ul-Adha.
"Apparently these unfortunate people were trying to celebrate the Eid holidays and consumed this poisonous drink which is locally made," she said.
Following the incident, police conducted several raids in the area to unearth illegal liquor factories which led to the arrest of at least three persons.
Although alcohol consumption is banned in Pakistan, non-Muslims are allowed to drink liquor by purchasing alcohol from government-controlled licensed liquor shops.
"The problem is that poor people can't afford the liquor sold at these outlets and opt for cheaper alcohol or moonshine stuff which is made in Katchi Abadis," Imran Shaukat, a senior police official said.
Last week, around 20 people had died in Sindh province's Hyderabad city after consuming toxic liquor.