animal-1836120_1920 A cobra venomous poisonous snake
For illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Pixabay

Patna: Policemen in Bihar had a narrow escape when they encountered hissing cobras while searching for liquor bottles during a raid conducted to enforce total prohibition.

Bihar enforced total prohibition more than five years ago but the liquor has continued to flow into the state.

Acting on a tip-off that villagers from Dalit families in Bihta town of Patna district were engaged in smuggling liquor bottles, a team of police rushed to the house of a snake charmer and began searching for illicit liquor.

During the raids, the policemen came across some big plastic boxes kept in the house and asked the family to open the lid, but they refused saying deadly cobras were lying inside.

Suspecting these boxes were being used to smuggle liquor, one of the cops himself opened the boxes with the help of a stick.

Witnesses said once the policeman removed the lid, deadly snakes crawled out of the boxes and began hissing in a bid to attack them, forcing the cops to beat a hasty retreat. It was only after the snake charmer put the snakes back in the boxes that the cops heaved a sigh of relief.

Bihar police have been conducting extensive raids across the state to check smuggling of illicit liquor after being warned of severe punitive action by chief minister Nitish Kumar during a review meeting held last week.

The government told the police that the onus of implementation will fall on officers-in-charge of police stations and watchmen of the areas concerned. As per the decision taken at the high level, erring police officers will be suspended and won’t be posted in a police station for a decade if liquor is recovered from his/her areas. They will also be dismissed from service if found conniving with illegal liquor traders.

The state government hardened its posture when over 40 villagers died after consuming spurious liquor early this month which not only earned huge embarrassment but also severe criticism from the opposition.