JORHAT, March 5 - Police in Jonai civil sub-division of Dhemaji district on Monday arrested Mahesh Beria, a Jorhat-based trader, on charges of selling lali gur (molasses) which was allegedly used by unscrupulous people to produce illicit liquor (sulai) the consumption of which led to deaths of over 150 people and hundreds falling ill in Jorhat and Golaghat districts about 11 days back.
A police source stated that Beria was arrested in connection with a case registered at Jorhat Police Station against him and three others for allegedly selling lali gur to hooch producers.
Beria and three others were booked under Sections 120 (B), 420, and 188 of the IPC after an executive magistrate of Jorhat district administration lodged an FIR against the traders last week after carrying out raids at their godowns where molasses was reportedly found.
Beria will soon be brought to Jorhat, the source stated.
Three days ago, Jorhat Police seized about three quintals of lali gur reportedly from the house of Dambaru Gogoi at Uttar Hatisungi village under Lichubari Police Outpost on the outskirts here and subsequently arrested Gogoi.
The molasses were stored to be delivered to hooch producing rackets, police claimed. On February 23, the district administration had prohibited sale and storage of lali gur for 60 days from the date of issuing the order.