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Driving licence in India

In India, the driving licence is the official document After passing a driving test, the provisional licence may
which authorises its holder to operate various types of be surrendered in exchange for a full Indian licence for
motor vehicle on highways and some other roads to which the relevant kind of vehicle. Full car licences allow use
the public have access. In various Indian states, they of mopeds, motorcycles and cars.
are administered by the Regional Transport Authori-
A licence if valid for 20 years from the date of issue or
ties/Offices (RTA/RTO). A driving licence is required in till the licence holders turns 50 years of age, whichever
India by any person driving a vehicle on any highway or happens earlier. The driving licence is required to be re-
other road defined in the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. newed after expiry of its validity.[5]
Indian nationals do not normally have identity cards: a
modern photo driving licence can serve many of the pur-
poses of an identity card in non-driving contexts (proof of 2 Theory testing
identity (e.g. when opening a bank account) or age (e.g.
when applying for a mobile connection)).
Tests on basic driving rules are conducted at the RTOs
when an individual applies for provisional licence. The
theoretical test in India consists of basic road sign ques-
1 Background tions, which are the same for car and motorcycle tests:

Applications for a provisional driving licence can be • Multiple choice questions – 20 questions with a
made from the age of 16. Valid for driving a moped or choice of possible answers. At least 8 questions
gearless motorcycle (with a capacity of up to 50 cc) from should be answered correctly to pass this section.
aged 16,[1] and a car from aged 18 or older to drive any
other type of vehicle.[2] The common “All India Permit” • Verbal or written test (depending on the state)
allows the licensee to drive throughout the country.[3] For
driving commercial/transport vehicles, one should obtain The theory test are completed on the computer, and both
endorsement (and a minimum age of 20 years, in some must be passed in order to pass the theory test.
states) in the driving licence to effect under s.3(1) of The
Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. Until a driving test (which
consists of three sections: verbal or written test (depend- 3 Driving licence categories
ing on the state), road sign test followed by a supervised
driving examination)[4] has been passed a driver may hold See also: Car classification
only a provisional licence and be subject to certain con-
This is a list of the categories that might be found on a
The conditions attached to provisional licences of a par- driving licence in India.
ticular category of vehicle are:[2]
• MC 50CC (Motorcycle 50cc) — motorcycles with
• L-plates must be conspicuously displayed on the an engine capacity of 50 cc or less.
front and rear of the vehicle.
• MC EX50CC (Motorcycle more than 50cc) —
• Learner drivers of a particular category and trans- motorcycles and (Light Motor Vehicle)CAR.
mission type of vehicle must be accompanied by
• FVG—Motorcycles of any engine capacity, but
somebody who has held a full driving licence for that
without gears, including mopeds and scooters
category and transmission type, except in the case of
solo motorcycles and vehicles of certain categories • MCWG or M/CYCL.WG (Motorcycle With
designed solely for one person. Gear) — all motorcycles.
• Motorcycle riders must not carry any pillion passen- • LMV (Light Motor Vehicle) — including motor-
ger. cars, jeeps, taxis, delivery vans.
• Bus drivers must not carry any passenger except a • LMV-NT (Light Motor Vehicle—Non Trans-
person giving or receiving instruction. port) — for personal use only


• LMV-TR (Light Motor Vehicle—Transport) — minor traffic violations, and specifies who has the rights
for commercial transportation.[6] to enforce these rules.

• HMV (Heavy Motor Vehicle) Every driving licence has a maximum number of endorse-
ments allowed. If the driver does not follow the traffic
• HPMV (Heavy Passenger Motor Vehicle) rules or causes any fault, then a penalty fine is issued and
an endorsement put on the licence. An excessive number
• HGMV (Heavy Goods Motor Vehicle) of endorsements may lead to cancellation.[8]

• TRAILOR — a person holding a heavy vehicle

driving licence can only apply for heavy trailor li-
6 See also
• Driving in India
Most of the legislation regarding licensing is in the Rules
of the Road Regulation and the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. • Speed limits in India
Private/Commercial drivers should have an additional
Badge if they are driving a taxi or any other public trans- • Road signs in India
port vehicle.

7 References
4 Points and endorsements
[1] Vaibhav Ganjapure (12 August 2016). “Not 18 years old?
You can't ride bikes over 50cc”. Times of India. Retrieved
India uses cumulative points systems, broadly similar but 25 August 2016.
different in detail in different countries, for offenders.
[2] “MOTOR VEHICLES ACT, 1988” (PDF). Retrieved 24
Points are given for driving offences by law courts, and June 2016.
the licence is endorsed accordingly. An Indian driving li-
cence may be endorsed by the courts for various offences, [3] s.3 and 4 of Motor Vehicles Act 1988, India
not only for those committed whilst driving or in charge [4] “Foreign Drivers in India: Legal Aspects”. InterNations.
of a vehicle. If the individual committing the offence Retrieved 24 June 2016.
does not hold a valid driving licence the driver is subject
to be penalised or face imprisonment of up to 3 months.[7] [5] “Renewal Driving License”. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
Violation of traffic signals, triple driving on motor cycle,
[6] “Driving license / India Drive Safe”. Retrieved 24 June
using vehicles without registration or in unsafe condition 2016.
may endorse and attract 3 negative points in each case.[8]
[7] “Traffic Offences and Penalties in India”. Retrieved 24
In case of two-wheelers, helmet laws is mandatory for
June 2016.
the main rider and the pillion rider. Offences such as for
drink or drug driving are recorded on the licence and the [8] “Stiffer fines, penalty points for traffic offences in the off-
offender is prosecuted and imprisoned.[9] ing”. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
Twelve points on the licence makes the driver liable to [9] “Driving licence to be suspended for minimum of 3
cancellation/suspension of driving licence for one year; months on traffic rule violation: Supreme Court panel”.
accumulation of twelve points for the second consecutive Retrieved 24 June 2016.
time would lead to suspension of driving licence for five
[10] “Transport Department”. Retrieved 24 June 2016.

5 Production 8 External links

• Motor Vehicles Act, 1988
Drivers are legally obliged to carry a valid driving licence
while driving. Under s.130 of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988;
A police officer or any other official authorised by the
government can ask for vehicle-related documents, and
the driver should produce them within 15 days at the po-
lice station (or the concerned department).[10]
The law permits officials to seize a licence, and issue a
temporary one for a specified time. The law also allows
the state government to set the fines or prison terms for

9 Text and image sources, contributors, and licenses

9.1 Text
• Driving licence in India Source: Contributors: Alan Liefting,
Velella, Woohookitty, Shreevatsa, Mandarax, Bgwhite, Rsrikanth05, SmackBot, Yamaguchi , Gilliam, Zymurgy, Khazar, 16@r, Lf-
stevens, MikeLynch, Md amin, Sebwite, Joshua Issac, Falcon8765, Dawn Bard, Matthew Yeager, Flyer22 Reborn, Birju wishmaster,
Rameshnbn, Aravind V R, Amrithraj, Ryan8374, AlanM1, Karan.102, Yobot, AnomieBOT, Materialscientist, FrescoBot, Hemanthkiwi,
Callanecc, Skamecrazy123, Velagaleti18, Dhasu19788, Chandu.emani, TruckCard, ClueBot NG, TruPepitoM, Widr, Theopolisme, Helpful
Pixie Bot, Novusuna, BG19bot, MKar, Mybiomedical, Creptil, Tastilazo, Mark Arsten, Wikih101, Hajasherief, TardisAtPigfarts, Doc-
torKubla, Wasimppc, Itoboy, Frosty, Advjuvairianv, Donnowin1, Gannettnews, Jeffrey Klassen, Ickityick, MAYANKmakSHEKHAR,
Binoykb, Tentinator, Veeresh0108, Gurgaon expert, Official pesina7, Elisabetta Pietrostefani, Sklaring, Sky marlin, Ricardow58, Natty-
dicko;), Er. Amogh Bhatnagar, Sarthak7, Anooprhythm6030, Debaditya Dutta, Filedelinkerbot, KH-1, Dnyaneshwar Sahebrao Thakare,
CAPTAIN RAJU, Awzsex, Mav0125, PageImp, EngvarB consistency and Anonymous: 85

9.2 Images
• File:Driving_licence_sample_in_India.png Source:
in_India.png License: CC BY-SA 4.0 Contributors: Own work Original artist: PageImp
• File:Flag_of_India.svg Source: License: Public domain Contributors:
? Original artist: ?

9.3 Content license

• Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0