Over 450 died in drunken driving in Meghalaya in five years

Shillong: Over 400 persons have died and more than 1,700 injured due to drunken and rash driving in the past five years in Meghalaya, according to a report tabled in the just concluded Assembly session.

The report tabled by Meghalaya Home Minister Roshan Warjri said, between 2010 and 2014, 463 persons lost their lives because of drunken driving and 1,772 persons were injured in similar accidents.

While 94 persons died and 394 injured in 2010, 92 died and 274 injured in 2011, 92 died and 311 injured in 2012, 89 died and 402 injured in 2013 and 96 died and 391 injured in 2014, the report stated.

As many as 557 persons have been booked and several persons chargesheeted for drunk driving during the same period, the report said. The Home Minister, while replying on the measures adopted by the state government, said, the state cabinet recently decided to direct licensed liquor shops along the highways to shift to a distance of at least 200 meters away from the road. This exercise is expected to be completed within six months.

Steps were also being taken to set up 'mobile courts' where magistrates will conduct random checks and drivers found to be under the influence of alcohol will be booked.

Opposition United Democratic Legislator Paul Lyngdoh claimed the number of deaths in such accidents have surpassed those who died in militancy-related incidents in 20 years.

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