Learn All About Different Vehicle Number Plates in India

A vehicle number plate is a metal plate with the registration number at the lower front and back of the vehicle body. In India, you must have seen various colored number plates along with an alphanumeric number embossed on them. However, have you ever wondered what it signifies and how they are different from one another? Let us find out!

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Components of Number Plate

To understand the format of the vehicle number plate, read ahead-

Components of Vehicle Number Plate

MH.1AA.2345, the first component is the state code MH (Maharashtra), 04 is the RTO (district code), and last AH1053 is the unique alphanumeric unique code that gives identity to the vehicle.

Part 1-

The first part of the number plate denotes the state or UT (Union Territory) from which the vehicle belongs and this is denoted by 2 letters.

For this number- MH.1AA.2345, MH refers to Maharashtra. Similarly, for Delhi it will be 'DL', and for Telangana it will be 'TS'. It uses the 2 most significant alphabets of the state's or UT's name.

Part 2-

The second part refers to a district's sequential number under which the vehicle is registered. Each district has its own RTO (Regional Transport Office), which handles the registration of all new vehicles in that particular location.

Part 3-

Now comes the third part of the number plate, which has a unique alpha-numeric set that gives an identity to the vehicle.

Also, RTO allows you to get this number as you desire but charges a premium price for the purchase.

Another significant element of a number plate is the IND logo (which is an acronym for India). It is the final part of the number plate consists of an oval logo that has a chromium hologram on top of it which denotes the 'Chakra'. All motor vehicles in India must have this number plate to drive them legally.

Types of Number Plates

In India, there are seven different types of color schemes used in number plates, which are as follows-

  • White- A white colored number plate with black text is for private vehicles and this vehicle cannot be used for commercial purposes.
  • Yellow- A yellow-colored number plate with black text is for commercial vehicles in India, such as taxis and trucks.
  • Green- A green-colored number plate with white tax is for Electronic Vehicles (EVs).
  • Blue- A blue-colored number plate with white text is for those vehicles, which are used by foreign delegates.
  • Black- A black-colored number plate with yellow text is rented out for commercial purposes and owned by a private owner. In this case, a commercial driving license is not mandatory.
  • Red- A red-colored number plate vehicle is exclusively designed for the President of India and different State Governors. These vehicles have the Emblem of India embossed in gold instead of the license number.
  • Upward arrow- In India, military vehicles use a different style of number plate. It has a broad arrow as a prefix for the number and instead of state code, it has the year in which the vehicle was manufactured.

Temporary Number Plate

A temporary number plate has a temporary registration number that gives an identity to brand-new vehicles until it is registered at the respective RTO. The automobile dealer issues this number using a TR sticker, in which TR means 'To Register'. As per the law, the validity of this number plate is one month and within this period, the owner has to visit the district's RTO to register their vehicle and get a permanent registration number.

To register your motor vehicle, you must have a valid Driving License (DL), Pollution Under Control Certificate (PUCC), third-party liability insurance policy, sales invoice of the vehicle, roadworthiness certificate, etc. In this process, the surveyor verifies the engine and chassis number of the vehicle.

You May Also Read- Can You Raise Claim Under Bike Insurance With a Temporary Registration Number?

Font Variation in Vehicle Number Plate

Fonts used in the vehicle number plate should be clear and can be easily read or recognized from a distance. If the fonts on the number plate are unreadable, this might lead the vehicle owner in trouble with traffic police. According to the number plate rules, every vehicle should have an HSRP number plate instead of using fancy fonts, stickers, regional language, or any type of art.

In some states of India, the first 0 of the district court is replaced with a letter on the vehicle number plate. These letters represent the category of the vehicle to which they belong. Here are the letters used for different vehicles in India-

  • S refers to two-wheelers
  • C refers to cars & SUVs
  • E refers to EVs (Electric Vehicles)
  • R refers to three-wheeler rickshaws
  • P refers to passenger vehicles (buses)
  • T refers to tourist-licensed vehicles
  • Y refers to vehicles for rent/hire
  • V refers to vans and pickup trucks

Summing It Up!

According to the Central Motor Vehicle Rule 1989, you should only use HSRP (High Security Number Plate) in your vehicle. Now that you are aware of different types of colors scheme and their meaning, therefore, it will be easier for you to apply for a vehicle registration plate. Also, always keep your valid DL, RC, PUCC, and motor insurance policy while driving your vehicle.

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