Drunk driving: Court replaces jail term with fine

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New Delhi, Jun 9: A session court here has let off a man, sentenced to 10-day jail by a magisterial court for drunk driving, after payment of a fine, saying that he should have been shown leniency when an alternative sentence of fine was provided for the offence.

"Since the appellant was not a previous convict and he pleaded guilty for the offence, I am of the view that a lenient approach by trial court was required while awarding sentence, particularly when an alternative sentence of fine is provided for the offence," Additional Sessions Judge Bimla Kumari said, replacing the jail term with Rs 2,000 fine.

The sessions court ruling came on an appeal by North East Delhi resident Krishna Kumar Shukla against the April 2011 order of the trial court sentencing him to 10 days of imprisonment for drunken driving.

Shukla was intercepted by traffic police on April 1 near Mori Gate and was found driving a motorcycle in inebriated condition and without license and vehicle insurance.

In his appeal, Shukla said he pleaded guilty on his counsel's advice that he would be let off with the fine but was sentenced to 10 days in jail besides various amounts of fine on different counts under the Motor Vehicles Act.

He also submitted before the ASJ that the trial court had awarded a grave and deterrent punishment to him for an offence for which he was liable to be released either on probation or by imposing the fine. The trial court did not consider the reformative aspect of the punishment, he said.

PTI

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