At least 24 people died in Odisha after consuming spurious liquor laced with medicines, authorities said.
The victims from Cuttack and Khordha districts fell ill Tuesday after taking the drink that officials said contained drugs used to treat cough and cold and to dress wounds.
District Collector S.N. Girish told IANS that among the dead was Baidhar Bhoi, the brew seller. He was the first to die -- Tuesday morning.
Other deaths took place during Tuesday. The toll climbed to 24 Wednesday afternoon.
The toll may increase further as nearly 20 were in critical condition.
According to officials, people from several areas had gone to Tukuliapada village in Cuttack district to buy the drink Monday night.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said a judicial commission led by a retired Odisha High Court judge would probe the deaths.
Excise Commissioner Sudarsana Nayak said the medicines used in the brew contained a high percentage of alcohol.
Three people, who are relatives of the liquor kingpin, have been arrested.