Getting behind the wheel of a vehicle – car, truck, motorcycle or any other motorized vehicle – after consuming alcohol is a serious crime. Drinking and driving is referred to as driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI). And often, the unfortunate accidents because of drunken driver come to forth. Huge penalties are imposed on those who drink and drive but still, the number has not gone down. By highlighting this crucial point, Dr Sagar Mundada Practicing psychiatrist based in Mumbai has written a letter to Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis.
In his letter, Dr Mundada has requested the Chief Minister to introduce a concept of mandatory checkup of drink drive cases by psychiatrists. He has asked that only when 2 psychiatrists give their ‘no objection’ remark, then only the driving license should be given back to the person.
“The data obtained through RTI from highway safety patrol shows that there has been have increased almost three times over last 5 years. Drink driving should be seen as a symptom of the alcohol use problem. Most of the cases are those of repeat offenders. Only penalties are not helpful in putting the deterrence to drink and drive. So there should be other mechanism,” Dr Mundada told My Medical Mantra.
Dr Mundada’s letter:
- Any drunk and drive case will be referred to mental health professional
- Only after at least 2 mental professionals expresses no objection over the person’s driving, license should be reissued
- The person should do a follow up
- If psychiatrists do not feel sure about the change in behavior and thought process then the license should be revoked