Mumbai: Police action fails to curb drink driving | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Mumbai: Police action fails to curb drink driving

With 13 people losing their lives and 130 being injured over the past three years, the crackdown by Mumbai traffic police appears to have done little to deter motorists from driving under the influence.

mumbai Updated: Oct 16, 2014 22:22 IST
Farhan Shaikh

More than one lakh people have been caught driving in an inebriated condition since the Mumbai traffic police stepped up its campaign against drink driving in 2007.

With 13 people losing their lives and 130 being injured over the past three years, the crackdown appears to have done little to deter motorists from driving under the influence. So far, 54,897 drivers have been imprisoned after conviction and licences of 46,535 motorists have been suspended, police records show.

Since 2012 — when 14,133 cases were registered — there has been a steady rise in instances of people driving drunk. In 2013, 16,525 people were caught — a 14.47% increase over the previous year. And till September 30, 2014, the figure has touched 11, 645.

According to the traffic police, despite constantly monitoring motorists and conducting regular nakabandis, drink driving continues to be one of the biggest traffic violations in the city.

“It is our priority to deter motorists from driving drunk and hence bring down the number of accidents caused because of it,” said Dr BK Upadhyay, joint commissioner of police, traffic. “We are taking all possible steps to ensure this happens.”

“Apart from adopting various measures, we have been urging managers at bars and restaurants to appoint drivers for patrons who are not fit to drive after partying. This is one way to decrease the number of fatalities caused by accidents because of drink driving,” said an officer from the prosecution department of the Mumbai traffic police, on condition of anonymity.

Officers said while it is difficult to point out factors responsible for people driving drunk, it was found that most offenders across the city were youngsters.

Further, a majority of cases were reported from the northern and eastern suburbs of the city.