The preliminary inquiry into the death of two persons after consuming liquor in the house of one of them at Pathumuri, near Kumily, on Wednesday night raises the suspicion that the drink contained pesticide, the police say.

A top police official said here on Thursday that autopsies confirmed the presence of pesticide residues in the intestines of the victims, Kaviyarasan, 35, and Rayikuttan, 42.

Another senior police official at Kumily said the final report would be prepared only after getting the autopsy reports. He said how the poison had entered the liquor would be inquired into.

Two others who also consumed liquor in Rayikuttan's house are out of danger. One of them was discharged from a hospital in Kumily on Thursday. The other is in the Government Medical College Hospital in Kottayam. He is out of danger, hospital sources said.

The top police official, who visited the spot on Wednesday night, said the room where they had consumed the liquor, which is said to have been bought from a Beverages Corporation outlet in Kumily, had stocks of pesticide and pest-control powder bottles used in the plantation sector. The area was in the cardamom plantation sector and the victims were workers there. Rayikuttan used to buy liquor from the Beverages Corporation outlet and sell it.

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