First Woman Jailed for Drunk Driving

Times of India

Mumbai, Aug 5: For the first time since the campaign against drunk driving began , a woman has been sentenced to a day's simple imprisonment. Although women have been booked for drunk driving in the past, they have been let off without a fine. An executive with a south Mumbai firm, the 42-year old woman was driving a Mercedes on Friday August 1 night when the traffic police flagged her down near Colaba.

The woman failed a breathalyser test and was booked for drunk driving. On Monday, she was summoned to the Esplanade metropolitan magistrate's court and was handed out a sentence of a day's simple imprisonment. She spent the day in the Azad maidan lock-up and was released in the evening.

"This is the first time a woman has been convicted for drunken driving and it shows that we have a big problem which needs to addressed urgently ,'' a senior traffic police official said. A fortnight ago, a former minister's daughter was caught at Worli. Her case has yet to come up for hearing.

The executive was only one of the three women summoned to court in connection with drunk driving. The other two women failed to turn up. They will be issued fresh summons. Four men too were sentenced to a day's imprisonment at the Esplanade court on Monday.

The number of motorists who were convicted for drunken driving in the past one year has crossed the 8,000 mark. "A total number of 8,065 cases have been registered in the past one year. The driving licences of 8,108 motorists were also suspended during the same period. But the menace continues ,'' a senior official said.

Last week, traffic cops managed to secure prison sentences for some celebrities who were caught driving under the influence of alcohol. Many were driving high-end cars such as Mercedes and Skodas.

"All these motorists told us they were aware of the rules but thought they could get away by paying paltry fines,'' the official said.

The Mumbai traffic police said the number of fatalities had reduced by 20% after the department initiated the campaign against drunk driving in June last year.

"We urge all motorists not to drive after consuming alcohol as they will be booked sooner or later and will end up in a lock-up . Though one may not realise it initially, drinking can lull your senses and the probability of an accident occurring increases,'' the official said.

Scary Stats

Total number of drunken driving cases in the past one year: 21,714 Total number of motorists who were convicted : 8,065 Total number of motorists whose licences were suspended: 8,108


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