Special teams deployed to check manufacture and sale of arrack
Even as 19 persons lost their lives after consuming the poison-laced hooch and several tribals were hospitalised from the villages in Mylavaram division in the incident, arrack manufacturers were active in Krishna district.
While the Excise officials were in a shock over the government's action on their colleagues and the political parties were busy in blaming one another after the hooch tragedy, the manufacturers were continuing the illegal trade.
The Prohibition and Excise Police, who launched flash rides soon after the hooch tragedy from December 31, booked as many as 71 cases and arrested several persons, including some women, giving evidence for the presence of arrack brewing units (sara batteelu) and the sale of ID liquor in the district.
As part of the ‘action plan' for Sankranthi festival, which also coincided with the hooch tragedy, the Excise police conducted raids in Mylavaram, Kanchikacherla, Jaggaiahpeta, Nuzvid, Tiruvuru, Vissannapeta, Machilipatnam, Bantumilli, Vuyyuru, and Gannavaram areas and arrested 65 persons involved in brewing ID liquor, from December 31 to January 5.
Besides, the excise sleuths are ‘binding over' offenders notorious for preparing hooch to prevent brewing and sale of the countrymade liquor. Speaking to The Hindu on Friday, Prohibition and Excise Krishna district Deputy Commissioner Arvinder Singh said 10 teams were constituted to control the manufacturing and sale of arrack.
The excise police raided dens in several Thandas (tribal hamlets) and villages, including Kanimerla Thanda, Yedurubedem Thanda, Poratanagar Thanda, Mylavaram, Jammavaram, Tatigummi, Jayanthipuram Thanda, K.Agraharam, Chillaboinapalli, Edara, Cheemalapadu, Vinagadapa, Gampalagudem, Thatakuntla, Polati Tippa, Gandram, Podu, Valluripalem, and other villages and seized 917 litres of ID liquor and destroyed 18,530 litres of fermented jaggery wash.
Police bound over 28 persons in Mylavaram, Kanchikacherla, Nuzvid, and Tiruvuru police station limits under Section 110 CrPc. The jaggery dealers supplying material for ID liquor manufacturing would also be booked along with the sellers, Mr.Singh warned.
Instructions given to the officers will continue to be in force till Sankranthi, the Deputy Commissioner said.