Chandigarh, Aug 2 (PTI) Union Minister and SAD leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal on Sunday accused the Congress government in Punjab of carrying out a "cover-up exercise" to "save" some ruling party legislators from action in the hooch tragedy that has so far claimed 98 lives.

She further alleged that Chief Minister Amarinder Singh was "shielding" Congress leaders who had been "named" by the families of victims.

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"A cover up exercise is on to save Cong MLAs from action for 86 deaths in Pb #hooch tragedy. Action must be taken against distilleries supplying ENA to MLAs' associates. Condemnable that CM @capt_amarinder, who also holds Excise & Home, is shielding Congmen named by victim families (sic)," Harsimrat tweet on Sunday.

At least 98 people have died in Punjab's hooch tragedy. Seventy-five deaths have been reported From Tarn Taran, 12 from Amritsar and 11 from Gurdaspur's Batala. The Punjab government has already ordered a magisterial probe into the incident.

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The chief minister on Saturday had announced the suspension of seven excise and six police officials. 

However, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) chief Sukhbir Badal on Saturday had alleged that the hooch tragedy was the "direct and natural consequence of the patronage given to Congress leaders, including ministers and MLAs, for freely carrying out rampant illicit liquor trade in the state".

Demanding a probe by a sitting judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, the opposition SAD had also asked the chief minister demanding that he steps down "owning moral responsibility for this horrendous crime".

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