The State Home Department informed the Bombay High Court Thursday that in a period of over seven years — June 2007 and October 2014 — the Mumbai police have suspended 46,998 driving licences. In Maharashtra, the department said, between 2006 and August 2014 almost 3 lakh cases of drunken driving have been registered, translating into a whopping Rs 45.55 crore as fine.
The court was hearing a PIL filed by journalist Nikhil Wagle, that had sought enhancement of the punishment under section 304 following the 2002 hit-and-run case in which actor Salman Khan is undergoing a fresh trial.
“I say and submit that as preventive measures, large banners and digital screens displaying ‘Don’t Drink and Drive’ have been installed on various junctions in the state,” said Joint Secretary of the state home dept, Charushila Tambekar.
In addition, Tambekar, told Justices A S Oka and A S Gadkari that state government had decided to make amendments to several sections of the Motor Vehicle Act for increasing the compensation amount and fine.
The judges then directed the Additional Solicitor General Anil C Singh, appearing on behalf of the Centre, to consider the representation made by the state government for the revision of compensation in cases of hit-and-run and drunken driving cases.
The Centre, however, did not support the Bill and sent a reply about their contention on December 26, 2012.
The joint secretary also told the judges that the state government also proposed certain changes in section 304A (causing death by negligence) of the IPC. The Centre also stated that apart from making the offence non-bailable, it also proposes to introduce section 304 A (2) that will attract a minimum of two years imprisonment and a maximum of seven years and a fine.