Can’t book ‘under influence of alcohol’ case based on breathing test: HC
Kottarakkara: The High Court on Tuesday observed that an ‘under the influence’ case cannot be registered purely on the basis of a breathing test.
The HC made the observation while dismissing a case filed by Kunnikkod police against three persons from Thalavoor on charges of drinking at a public place.
The court reminded the 2018 ruling that an ‘under the influence’ case can be registered only if the accused fails to pass the scientific blood test to understand the amount of alcohol in one’s blood. Some medicines have a smell similar to alcohol and it will not be clear in alcohol meter tests. Blood sample test is the correct procedure; the HC had ruled in 2018.
It is a usual practice for police to make the person, suspected to be under the influence of alcohol, breath out onto the face or hand of a police officer and register a case based on the smell. Even if the accused is taken to a hospital, the police would procure a certificate from the doctor without conducting a blood test.
The Thalavoor natives alleged that Kunnikkod police registered a case against them because of personal enmity. Earlier, the Punaloor DySP had submitted a report in favor of the three men. Following this, the trio approached the HC.