“Alcohol is not available because of the lockdown"
Three Indian brothers have died after consuming three litres of hand sanitiser after they reportedly ran out of alcohol.
The brothers, from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, bought a five-litre can of sanitiser after the imposed lockdown left them unable to source alcohol.
According to Sub-Inspector RK Mishra, the brothers felt ill after consuming the sanitiser on Sunday, March 21, 2021.
However, they still continued to drink it on Monday, March 22, 2021.
According to the police, the can of sanitiser still had two litres left in it when it was found. Therefore, the three Indian brothers had consumed three litres of it before they died.
A case has been registered, and an investigation into their deaths is underway.
The government of Madhya Pradesh has imposed a lockdown in several of its cities, including Bhopal.
This is due to a spike in the number of Covid-19 cases in the area.
The state has also imposed a ban on gatherings ahead of the Holi festival.
To help curb the spread of the virus, medical experts around the world have been recommending that people clean their hands with alcohol-based sanitisers.
As hand sanitiser is a must-have during the pandemic. However, there have been numerous cases of people drinking it as it is of easier access than alcohol.
In January 2021, a 70-year-old man and two of his relatives also died from drinking hand sanitiser.
India has reported several cases of sanitiser consumption since the initial 2020 lockdown.
In July 2020, at least ten people died from drinking hand sanitiser after a village in Andhra Pradesh closed its liquor shops.
The village of Kurichedu had imposed a lockdown following a surge in Covid-19 cases.
According to the district’s police chief Siddharth Kaushal, the victims had been mixing the sanitiser with water and soft drinks.
Kaushal also said that police sent samples of the sanitiser for chemical analysis, to investigate whether it had any other toxic content.
Kaushal added that the victims were alcohol-dependent, and had been drinking the mixture around ten days before their deaths.
Speaking of the incident, he told reporters:
“Some people who are heavily addicted to alcohol had been consuming hand sanitisers for the high.
“Alcohol is not available because of the lockdown, but hand sanitisers are easily available.”
Recommendations for hand sanitiser use is high to help prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Therefore, people are resorting to the consumption of it as an alcohol substitute.