India has had a rise in drunken driving cases in recent years, which has led to numerous unfortunate accidents. You should note that driving under the influence of alcohol is a serious criminal offence. As a matter of fact, if you are caught drinking and driving or driving under influence (DUI), you will be held guilty under the Motor Vehicles Act.
Section 185 of the Motor Vehicles Act states that an individual driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs will be considered guilty if they have alcohol exceeding 30 mg per 100 ml of blood which is detected in a test by a breath analyser, or if they are under the influence of any intoxicants to such an extent that it makes them incapable of exercising proper control over the vehicle. Let’s have a look at the punishments under Section 185 of the MV Act.
If you are found guilty under Motor Vehicles Act 185, you will have to face imprisonment of up to six months, 185 MV Act fine of ₹10,000 or both for the first offence. For subsequent offences, the punishment is imprisonment of up to two years, and MV Act 185 fine of ₹15,000, or both. Earlier, the 185 MV Act fine was ₹2,000 for the first offence and for the subsequent offence it was ₹3,000. It was increased in 2019 through the Motor Vehicles Act 2019.
Moreover, for Section 185 MV Act specifically, the drugs mentioned by the Central Government will be deemed to render an individual incapable of exercising proper control over the motor vehicle. Apart from this, you can be held liable for an offence under Section 184 of the Motor Vehicles Act - for driving dangerously. The punishment under the same is imprisonment of up to six months, a penalty of ₹1,000 or both for the first offence. For subsequent offences, the imprisonment term is of up to two years, a penalty of ₹2,000, or both.
Also, in case you are speeding or racing your vehicle, the punishment is imprisonment for a specific term or having to pay a penalty of ₹5,000 for the first offence and ₹10,000 for the subsequent ones. Now, let us understand the legal drinking age in India across different states to avoid committing any drink and drive offence.
It is needless to say that drinking and driving should be strictly avoided. The legal limit of permissible alcohol quantity in a driver’s system in India is 30 mg per 100 ml of blood. This means that if you are found with more than 30 mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood and it is detected in the breathalyser, you will be termed guilty. Coming to the legal drinking age in India, it varies between 18 years and 25 years for different states, while some states have a complete ban on alcohol. States such as Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, and others have a legal drinking age of 18 years. On the other hand, places like Delhi, Haryana, and others have 25 years as the legal age, while it's 21 years in some states. Alcohol consumption is completely banned in the states of Gujarat, Bihar, Manipur, Nagaland, and the union territory of Lakshadweep.
The country has been taking some serious steps to create awareness around the movement ‘Do not drink and drive’. It is basically to educate the up and coming generation that drunken driving is a serious criminal offence that will not only attract imprisonment and hefty fines but can also put other people’s lives in danger. The new Motor Vehicles Act was thus established to make Indian roads safer and ensure that people are following the road safety rules. Further, to provide additional financial coverage to your vehicle, you should always get a comprehensive motor insurance plan. It is also legally mandatory to have third party insurance for your vehicle. So, do not wait more and get a car or bike insurance available at Finserv MARKETS, now!
As per the New Motor Vehicles Act, 2019, the drunk driving penalty in India or Section 185 of Motor Vehicle Act fine is ₹10,000 and/or imprisonment of up to six months for the first offence. For consecutive offences, the penalty is ₹15,000 and/or imprisonment of up to two years.
According to the Indian Penal Court (IPC) Section 185 of the Motor Vehicles Act, an individual driving a vehicle under the influence of alcoholic substances (above the prescribed limit), will be held guilty for the same.
The legal blood alcohol content is 0.03% or 30 mg in 100 ml of blood.
The legal drinking age in India varies between 18 to 25 years.
Alcohol consumption is banned completely in Gujarat, Bihar, Manipur, Nagaland, and the union territory of Lakshadweep.