Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], August 1 (ANI): Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh announced Rs 2-lakh compensation each to the families of the deceased in the hooch tragedy that claimed at least 86 lives.

During the 13th edition of the Facebook Live of #AskCaptain interaction, the Chief Minister announced the suspension of ETOs (Excise & Taxation Officers), Lovejinder Brar, from Gurdaspur, B S Chahal from Amritsar and Madhur Bhatia from Tarn Taran.

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The Excise & Taxation Inspectors (ETIs) who have been suspended with immediate effect are Ravi Kumar (Gurdaspur), Gurdeep Singh (Amritsar) and Pukhraj from Fatehabad and Hitesh Prabhakar from City Tarn Taran in district Tarn Taran.

The Chief Minister also ordered the suspension of and inquiry against seven excise and taxation officers and inspectors, along with two DSPs and four SHOs of police in connection with the hooch tragedy, which has so far claimed 86 lives, as per an official statement of the Punjab government.

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Most of the deceased are from Tarn Taran, which accounts for 63 deaths, followed by Amritsar Rural at 12 and Gurdaspur (Batala) at 11.

As the death toll in the hooch tragedy rose to 86, the Punjab Police arrested 17 more people in a "massive crackdown" spanning more than 100 raids.

The total number of arrests in the case has gone up to 25, the police said.

The Chief Minister warned those indulging in spurious liquor business to stop immediately or face grave consequences.

"I had directed the police to trace the culprits and charge all the people involved in the case, in which he had yesterday ordered a magisterial inquiry by a Divisional Commissioner, who has been asked to submit his report within a month. Such illegal acts are not acceptable, I will not let people dying to the greed of a few criminals," Captain Amarinder Singh said.

The police officials suspended on charges of negligence in duty include DSP Jandiala (Amritsar Rural) and DSP sub-division Tarn Taran, and the SHOs of PS Tarsikka (Amritsar Rural), City Batala (Batala police district), PS Sadar Tarn Taran and PS City Tarn Taran.

According to the excise department, though reports of the chemical analysis of the material seized in Friday's raids were yet to come, a superficial check showed that the material was denatured spirit, generally used in paint/hardware industry. (ANI)

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