Drunken drivers may lose their license

Drunken drivers may lose their license

In a move that could cause jitters to those who drive vehicles under the influence of alcohol, the Mangalore City Police has decided to suspend the licence of the offenders in drunken drive cases.

Equipped with more breathalysers to test the alcohol content, the Mangalore police will be soon following the footsteps of their Bangalore counterparts.

The Bangalore City Police began suspending the driving licences in drunken driving cases in March this year using the provisions under the Motor Vehicles Act.

The tough implementation of the existing law by withdrawing the licence of even the first time offenders intends to control the increasing instances of drunken driving.

So far the Mangalore traffic police used to recommend the Regional Transport Office for the suspension of licences only in case of fatal accidents.

According to the information furnished by the Mangalore traffic division, the total number of accident cases in which the traffic police have recommended the Mangalore RTO to suspend the licences in last four years is 71, while no drunken drive cases were referred for cancellation of licence.

Currently, in drunken drive cases, there is no system of spot fine.

Police notice is issued to the offender to appear before the court and the court is empowered to impose the fine.

The penalty imposed for the first time offender is Rs 1,000 and second  time offender is Rs 2,000.

However, there have been no instances of police tracking down habitual offenders in drunken drive cases. The city police have booked 124 drunken drive cases in 2014, 321 cases in 2013, 361 cases in 2012 and 522 cases in 2011.

8 breathalysers

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Assistant Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Uday Nayak said that the city police will soon start the initiative of recommending the RTO to disqualify the licences in drunken drive cases.

Imposing penalty has had no impact on those who drive the vehicles under the influence of alcohol.

“The city police so far had only two breathalyser equipment to test the alcohol content.

With our division receiveing six additional equipment last week, it will help us to identify and test more number of drunken drivers.

The police will spring into action in some of the important junctions in the city to test the drivers, specially on week ends,” he said.

Regional Transport Officer Afzal Ahmed Khan said that after impounding the licence of the offender in drunken drive cases, the police will recommend it to the RTO and the RTO can disqualify it for a specific time without waiting for the court order.

“If the court convicts the offender, then his licence will be disqualified for a longer period and if the person is acquitted, then the licence will be released in a month or two,” he said.