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Delhi Wine Club
Draconian DUI Law in Canadian State

Posted: Saturday, 25 September 2010 11:45

Draconian DUI Law in Canadian State

Indian bureaucrats and politicians are often perceived as unfair, illogical and unjust when it comes to treating wine as a beverage but they are not alone; a new law that came in force last Monday in the Canadian state of British Columbia relating to warning for Driving Under Influence has got its citizens riled up as they feel it interferes with their constitutional freedom.

Canada's toughest impaired driving law went into effect in British Columbia on Monday, reports Calgary Herald. Having a glass of wine with dinner may have your car now impounded on the spot, with a three-day driving ban and a C$200 fine imposed with no opportunity for a fair trial. The fundamental principle of innocence until proven guilty has been deemed by B.C. lawmakers to be a nuisance that threatens to clog up the courts, reports the paper.

The new state law states that the breath analyzer test showing  0.05 and 0.08 blood alcohol content is considered a warning and anyone  found within this range can have these penalties assessed on the spot. Additionally, all related towing and storage fees will also be levied and drivers will have to pay a C$250 license reinstatement fee. In practical terms it means that even though one is driving within the legal limits, it might mean a minimum expense of C$600 and a three-day suspension.

The limit of 0.08 is accepted as an international level, even in India and nobody in BC seems to be opposed to it either. Interestingly, a driver refusing to provide a breath sample faces an immediate 90-day driving ban and a C$500 fine. The vehicle will also be impounded for 30 days and the driver may face criminal charges.

But the opposition is to the severe penalties for those as low as 0.05. While everyone will think twice about driving after consuming any wine, the new law is simply draconian and flies in the face of a society that believes in the rule of law and the presumption of innocence, opines the news report. As one reader comments, this is definitely over kill. ‘Give the public back their rights as citizens before we turn in to a dictatorship!’ the reader says.

The laws against DUI are as strict in India but unfortunately are not followed strictly, a few special campaigns notwithstanding. Drunk driving is a menace to society and needs harsh punishment. The prescribed level of 0.08 should be enough of a deterrent, if and only if followed strictly- a far cry from reality.


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