Adulterated alcohol kills 82 in Indonesia's Java island

Apr 11, 2018, 20:49 IST | IANS

The sale of alcohol in Indonesia, a country where Muslims account for 88 per cent of its 260 million residents, is regulated and subject to high taxation

Adulterated alcohol kills 82 in Indonesia

Indonesian authorities said on Wednesday that the number of people dead from consuming homemade adulterated alcohol on Java island has increased to 82 and seven suspects have been arrested in relation to the incident.

Deputy Chief of National Police Muhammad Syafruddin said in a Jakarta press conference that 51 people died in West Java province since Friday when the affected were taken to hospitals, Efe news reported.

The other 31 dead were from the metropolitan area of the provincial capital Bandung, according to Jakarta police spokesperson Argo Yuwono.

The hospital at Cicalengka city, located 25 km to the east of Bandung, attended to most casualties -- 147 patients -- since Friday. Of these, 31 died, according to hospital records accessed by the news agency.

On Wednesday, the Cicalengka hospital was attending to around 37 people after discharging 110.

At the press conference, the police presented six suspects of the seven arrested in Jakarta for selling adulterated alcohol, which according to laboratory analysis, contained methanol.

Methanol is a colourless, inflammable and toxic chemical compound used as an anti-freeze, a solvent and as fuel.

The sale of alcohol in Indonesia, a country where Muslims account for 88 per cent of its 260 million residents, is regulated and subject to high taxation.

Nahdlatul Ulama, the country's largest Muslim organization and of a moderate nature, in 2017 opposed a ban on alcohol sought by the most conservative section on grounds of the dangers of consuming adulterated alcohol.

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