Kathmandu, August 23
Traffic police have recommended concerned transport management offices to suspend licences of 439 drivers after they were caught driving under the influence for the sixth time.
According to section 60 of Motor Vehicle and Transport Management Act-1993, if a driver violates traffic rules for more than five times, concerned authority may suspend the driving licence of such drivers in the sixth instance on the basis of the number of punch holes in the licence.
Anti-drink driving is one of the sustained campaigns being conducted by traffic police. The campaign still continues ever since it was launched on 3 December 2011.
Senior Superintendent of Police Basant Kumar Pant, in-charge at Metropolitan Traffic Police Division, said the concerned transport management office had suspended the licence of 439 drivers caught committing DUI offence for more than five times.
The existing law does not say anything about alcohol limit and thus the law enforcement agency has adopted zero tolerance policy towards drink-driving.
Seizure of a licence having five holes is referred to the transport management offices for suspension for up to six months under the act. Traffic cops punch a hole on the bottom left corner of the licence for each offence.
Metropolitan Traffic Police Division toughened the crackdown on 7 December 2012, claiming that a fine of Rs 1‚000 per offence and mandatory attendance for 20-minute lecture on traffic safety did not deter drunk drivers.
According to Metropolitan Traffic Police Division, it booked as many 303,397 persons, including 1,817 women, so far for drink-driving in the valley since it launched the special campaign in the last eight fiscals to check rising road accidents caused by DUI.
This campaign has not only helped reduce road accidents likely to be caused by drink-driving, but has also led to a collection of more than Rs 275 million in revenue from the offenders.
Though the number of deaths increased to 254 in 8,918 road accidents in fiscal 2018-19 compared to 194 in 6,381 accidents in previous fiscal, fatalities caused by road accidents attributed to drink and driving account for only three per cent. Around 33 per cent of them are pedestrians, while others are riders, passengers and drivers.
A version of this article appears in print on August 24, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.