Man held for selling hooch dies in custody

January 6th, 2009 - 5:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Jan 6 (IANS) A man, who was arrested for selling illicit country-made liquor, died in police custody here Tuesday, officials said. He is suspected to have died due to excessive drinking.”Lalu Kumar Biswas, alias Raju, was arrested while selling illicit country liquor at Chowringhee area in central Kolkata Monday evening. We recovered a large amount of liquor pouches from him. He was lodged in the jail at the New Market police station,” city police Deputy Commissioner (central) Damayanti Sen told reporters.

Sen said that Raju complained of a breathing problem and chest pain Tuesday morning.

“Raju underwent a medical check up Monday night… the results were normal. However, he started complaining of a breathing problem and chest pain in the morning. We took him to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital where he died at around 11.30 a.m.,” Sen said.

The officer said he might have died because of excessive drinking.

“Raju not only sold liquor, but he was a heavy drinker himself. It is probable that he died because of his drinking habit. Even doctors attending to him at the hospital said he was suffering from withdrawal symptoms. But the real cause will be revealed only after we get the post-mortem report.”

Asked if there were any allegations against the police over Raju’s death in custody, Sen said: “There are no allegations.”

“Nevertheless, since Raju died in police custody, we will take all the necessary actions that include video-capturing the post-mortem and starting a judicial investigation,” Sen said.

Police have been conducting raids at all illicit liquor shops and arresting brewers across Kolkata after many labourers died of consuming hooch since Saturday at Khidirpore port area in southwest Kolkata.

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