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Asansol: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has defended her government’s providing monetary aid to families of those killed by spurious hooch at Santipur in Nadia saying that the families are not at fault.

The comment comes on a day education minister Partha Chatterjee handed over a cheque of Rs 2-lakh each to the families of 12 persons who have died of consuming spurious hooch at Santipur’s Chowdhury Para earlier this week.

“We have given Rs 2-lakh aid because the families should not suffer for no fault of theirs. Besides, nobody consumes spurious hooch knowingly,” the Chief Minister said addressing a public meeting at Kalna in East Burdwan today.

Recalling that the state government has already suspended 11 excise department officials for failure to check sale of spurious hooch at Santipur, she cautioned all government servants against dereliction in duty.

“We will not tolerate any negligence in public work and duty. Whoever it may be, they will be dealt with firmly,” CM said.