Odisha: Special drive against drunk driving; 138 Driving Licenses were suspended, 232 vehicles were detained and 216 drivers were arrested

Bhubaneswar: With COVID-related restrictions lifted by state government following a drastic dip in cases, Transport Department and State Police have resumed drive to check drunken driving. In a state wide joint drive against drunken driving by Odisha Police and Transport Department about 2600 drivers were subjected to breath analyser test on Saturday night.
In the night long drive a total of 251 drivers were detected driving under influence of alcohol. In accordance with the directives of the Supreme Court Committee on Road safety a total of 138 driving licenses (DLs) were suspended. Police and RTO staff detained 232 vehicles of the offenders. In strict action 216 drunk drivers were arrested by Police.
As many as 59 drivers were detected driving under influence of alcohol in Cuttack district. All of them were arrested by the Police. A total of 33 DLs were suspended in the district. Similarly, in Subarnapur district 20 drivers were found under influence of alcohol and 17 of them arrested by Police.
The September 2019 amendment of the Motor Vehicles Act 1988 mentions that in the case of drunken driving, first-time offenders will face imprisonment up to six months and/or fine up to Rs.10, 000. The second offence, if within two years, can lead to up to two years prison term and/or fine of Rs. 15,000.
Despite a set of strict laws and regulations, drunk driving continues to be one of the major reasons behind road accidents in India. As many as 648 road accidents took place in Odisha in 2020 due to drunken driving. A total of 298 people lost their lives in these incidents.
After going easy on drunken driving during Covid pandemic time in view of the health hazards associated with breath analyser test, the enforcement squads have been asked to conduct such drives at regular intervals.

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