The family of Police Sub-Inspector Dinanath Shinde is grappling with life without him. Shinde was among the two who died after a drunken Nooria Haveliwala (27), a Colaba resident, crashed her SUV into a police van and taxi early on January 30 at Marine Lines. Four others were injured.
Like the Shindes, there are several families whose lives changed in an instant of drunken madness. Each year, police statistics show, more than 50 people die due to the carelessness of drivers who’ve had one drink too many.
Mumbai has 15.3 lakh vehicles with 250 more being added every day. That, combined with the lifestyle changes that the metropolis is experiencing, has made maintaining road discipline a tough challenge for the police.
The police have responded by cracking down on dangerous driving. The drive, that kicked off on June 20, 2007, has resulted in 43,699 cases and 21,976 drivers imprisoned.
“The ever-increasing drink driving mishaps prompted us to launch the drive. There are regular checks across the city, especially in areas commonly visited by drivers after drinking,” said Nand Kumar, deputy commissioner of the traffic police.
Police officials said the drive has been a success and has helped maintain order on Mumbai’s roads. But, as the Haveliwala incident proved, it will take a lot more for to change drivers’ mindsets.