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People Are Still Drinking Hand Sanitiser As An Alternative To Liquor Despite Fatal Consequences

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Indiatimes
IndiatimesUpdated on Aug 12, 2020, 14:20 IST

Last month, spurious sanitiser blended with methanol caused the death of at least 16 people who consumed it in lieu of liquor in Prakasam district in Andhra Pradesh. According to the police, ten people have been arrested in connection to the incident.

The victims, who were habitual tipplers, consumed hand sanitiser as an alternative to liquor, as regular shops were closed due to Covid-19-imposed lockdown, in Kurichedu in Prakasam district on different dates last month and died.

A special investigation team of the district police found that a particular sanitiser named Perfect Gold caused the deaths as it was made of toxic methanol instead of ethanol, Prakasam Superintendent of Police Siddharth Kaushal told news agency PTI on Tuesday.

A person named Sale Srinivas alias Jajula of Vikarabad district in Telangana made the sanitiser illegally, along with his brother Siva Kumar, from a rented room in Hyderabad city and started selling it through various channels, he said.

hand sanitiser Reuters

Another person, Kesav Agarwal took up distribution of the spurious product as the profits were high, the SP told reporters in Ongole,adding that Md Dawood and Md Hazi Sab of Jeedimetla in Hyderabad supplied the methanol and other material for sanitiser manufacturing to Srinivas.

In fact, eight brands of sanitiser were consumed by rickshaw pullers, some beggars and other poor people in Kurichedu who were otherwise addicted to liquor.

Over the past few months, ever since the lockdown was implemented in the country, there have been numerous incidents of people dying after drinking hand sanitisers, thinking that it contains consumable alcohol.

Hand sanitisers are meant to be only used on the skin. Hand sanitiser with ethanol contains at least 60 per cent of the alcohol, while vodka's alcohol by volume generally starts around 40 per cent.

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