On the last day of the year, while people are busy celebrating New Year’s Eve, Pune police geared up to run a checking drive in association with the Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal (PMPML) in order to ensure that the drivers are not drunk while driving. In a first-of-its-kind initiative by the PMPML, which bought a dozen breathalysers, 12 officials from the accident department went around the city, on Thursday, to make sure that nobody was driving drunk.
Sanjay Kusalkar, accident department chief of PMPML, said, “This decision was taken by the administration because last year we had received complaints from passengers that some of our drivers were inebriated while driving on December 31.Therefore, we got 12 breathalysers and are running a checking drive this year. We do not want to risk the lives of our passengers; so, as a precaution, inspections are carried out at all the depots and on every route.“
He added, “The breathalysers have been given to ten depots and the other two are with our accident department officials. Since Thursday morning, our squads are active on various routes in Pune and the Pimpri-Chinchwad area. Buses are being randomly stopped and the driver and conductor are being checked. If found guilty, the administration will take strict action against that person.“
Shantaram Kharat, a driver, said, “It is good that our administration is checking whether our drivers are drunk or not, but it is also necessary to understand why a person drinks. It is mainly because there is a lot of pressure while driving. I will never support drink driving but the administra tion should provide good facilities to the drivers.“
Another driver, Ramesh Chavan, said, “I have been driving for more than 10 years now but have never come across an accident by PMPML drivers, which has happened because the driver is drunk.We support this drive as it is necessary to ensure that the passengers have a safe journey.“
Welcoming this checking drive, Jugal Rathi, PMP Pravasi Manch president, said, “These breathalysers should be operational for a long time and this drive should be done regularly, not just for one day. And, if any driver or conductor is found guilty, the PMPML administration should suspend him immediately and take firm action against him, which will send a message to the other PMPML employees, too.“
Source : Pune Mirror