New Delhi bans smoking while driving

New Delhi, April 10:

Police in New Delhi today enforced a ban on smoking and drinking while driving, as part of a stern crackdown to restore order on the Indian capital’s famously chaotic roads, officials said.

A raft of penalties were enforced in line with a March 26 city High Court order aimed at disciplining wayward New Delhi motorists.

Some 14 million people and four million vehicles jostle for space on the capital’s clogged roads daily, despite two million commuters using the metro.

“We collected 1.7 million rupees in fines from errant drivers within eight hours of launching the campaign at 6:00 am,” a traffic police department spokesman said.

A total of 4,571 motorists were fined and 220 vehicles impounded for various offences across the capital, the traffic police department said.

Motorists caught smoking while driving had to cough up $32.

“The police were out on the streets in strength at 6:00 am and this will continue,” said HPS Virk, deputy traffic police commissioner.