Hubballi: Dejected over failure to get alcohol for almost one month, a forty-five year old man and his sister died after consuming hand sanitizer in Kalghatgi taluk of Dharwad district on Sunday.
The deceased persons, identified as Basavaraj Venkappa Kuruvinkoppa and Jambavva Kattimani (50) of little hamlet Gambyapur, died at Karnataka Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS).
The wife of the deceased person has lodged a complaint at Kalghatgi police station stating that her husband had been addicted to alcohol since the last 10-12 years.
Basavaraj and his sister have reportedly consumed hand sanitizer several times since the last 2-3 days, severely deteriorating their health as they felt it is replacement for liquor and has high levels of spirit content.
They were admitted to KIMS only by Sunday early morning after complaining of serious pain in the stomach. The KIMS director Dr Ramalingappa Anthartani said that the deceased appears to have consumed too much sanitizer and the doctors couldn't save their life as they approached the hospital very late.
He also claimed that he is awaiting the postmortem report to know how much quantity of hand sanitizer the deceased had consumed.
"Condition of the patients was very critical when they were admitted to KIMS hospital. It seems that they had drunk too much hand sanitizer for non-availability of liquor. Consumption of hand sanitizer could prove fatal as it has high chemical contents" KIMS director Dr Ramalingappa Anthartani said
The Karnataka government has prohibited the sale of liquor ever since the Centre declared lockdown to control the spread of Coronavirus. This has prompted the alcohol addicts to buy liquor by paying hefty prices in the black market.
But, many poor people in villages have started consuming cheaper hooch and this trade has recently flourished in the rural areas.
Hooch trade has also prompted officials of the excise department to conduct raids in several villages of North Karnataka region. The many theft cases of liquor shops are reported in Karnataka as drunkards have become desperate to get alcohol.
The Karnataka government was planning to allow the sale of liquor after the end of the first phase of lockdown. But, the rising cases of Corona positive cases has prompted it to extend the ban on liquor sale until May 3.