Vehicle registered in one State need not be re-registered unless kept in another State for more than 12 months: Jammu & Kashmir High Court

3rd May,2021


Vehicle registered in one State need not be re-registered unless kept in another State for more than 12 months: Jammu & Kashmir High Court

The Jammu & Kashmir High Court ruled that once a vehicle is registered in any state in India, it is not allowed to be registered elsewhere in India unless it is held in another state for a period of more than twelve months (Zahoor Ahmad Bhat and Irshad Hussain Munshi v. Government of JK and Ors). As a result, a bench of Justices Ali Mohammad Magrey and Vinod Chatterji Koul quashed a Regional Transport Officer (RTO) circular mandating re-registration of vehicles purchased outside the Union Territory of J&K. "A vehicle once registered in any State in India shall not be allowed to be registered elsewhere in India," the Court said, "but when the Motor Vehicle registered in one State is held in another State for a period of more than 12 months, the owner shall apply to the Registering Authority under whose jurisdiction the vehicle is for the assignment of new registration mark." According to the Court, this is in accordance with Sections 46 and 47 of the Motor Vehicles Act.
In this case, the court is hearing a petition challenging a circular released by the Regional Transport Office (RTO) of Kashmir on March 27, 2021. According to the circular, owners who purchased their vehicles bearing a registration mark from outside the UT would be required to apply for a new registration mark within 15 days under the provisions of Section 47/50 of the Motor Vehicle Act 1988 and Rule 54 of the Central Motor Vehicle Rules 1989. Two vehicle owners, Zahoor Ahmad Bhat and Irshad Hussain Munshi, who live in J&K but bought vehicles with Delhi registration, challenged the decision.
On Thursday, a bench of Justices Ali Mohammad Magrey and Vinod Chatterji Koul quashed a circular issued by the Regional Transport Officer, Kashmir (RTO), in which vehicle owners who purchased their vehicles from outside the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory with outside registration marks were asked to apply for a new registration mark under Sections 47 and 50 of the Motor Vehicles Act.