What is RTO?


RTO is an abbreviation used for Regional Transport Officer. Regional Transport Officer  is licensing, registration, taxation authority of that region.  




How long is a learner licence valid?


6 months




I have obtained a learner licence in mumbai, is it valid in chennai?


A learner as well as permanent licence is valid throughout India.




Can a learner licence be renewed?


Very well, prior to the date of expiry.  




From where can I get my driving licence?


You have to apply to the licencing authority (RTO) in the jurisdiction in which you ordinarily reside or carry on business or the motor driving school from where you intend to get the instructions is situated.  




My licence is expired 2 year’s back, do I need to get a fresh one or can I still renew it?


You can renew your licence within 5 years from its date of expiry. Penalty for late renewal is charged after first 30 days of expiry. Meaning you have 30 days grace period after the date of expiry to renew it. Penalty for late renewal is Rs10 per year or part of year for the period lapsed.




Can I drive a motorcycle with learner licence?


Learner’s licence is meant for learning purpose only. It is not a full-fledged licence. You can drive only with pillion rider possessing valid driving licence with him.  




Who is exempted from test of competence for driving licence ?


A person holding a driving licence  issued by the Defence Department to drive their vehicles
or issued by a competent authority of any country outside India subject to the compliance of medical certificate is exempted from the test of competence to drive such class of vehicle.  




Can I drive with an expired licence?


No, driving with such licence is an offence under motor vehicle laws.  




I have lost my driving licence, what shall I do?


Apply to the concerned licencing authority to get duplicate licence, for that you need to know your licence number or date of issue of previous licence  so as to locate it from RTO record && police report in case you have lost it.




Do I need to keep the documents of vehicle with me while driving?


You must produce following valid document in original if demanded by police officer in uniform or an officer from motor vehicle dept.


I.. Driving licence


II.  Registration certificate


III. Taxation certificate


IV. Insurance certificate


V. PUC certificate


VI.Road permit and fitness certificate (for transport vechicles)  




Which documents I need to produce in support of age proof?


Any of the following documents can be used for Age proof:
1. School leaving certificate
2. S.S.C certificate
3. Birth certificate
4. Passport
5. Civil surgeon’s certificate




Which documents I need to produce in support of address proof?


Any of the following documents can be used for Address proof:
1. Electoral roll/ voters I-card
2. Life insurance policy
3. Passport
4. Electricity bill
5. Telephone bill
6. Rent receipt




Do I need to produce original age & address proof while obtaining the certificate?


You can produce the copies attested by a gazetted officer of the state government or central or local body.  




Do I need to be present while obtaining the licence ?


You must be present for obtaining a licence at RTO office.




How many hours of driving instructions a motor driving school is supposed to impart to the candidate




Type of vehicle

 Min days of training

Min hrs of instructions

Non transport









What is difference between contract carriage and stage carriage?


Contract carriage is the vehicle engaged for the whole journey between two points for carriage of persons hiring it but it has no right to take other passengers on route.


The stage carrier is a vehicle, which runs between two points irrespective of any prior contract and is boarded by passengers on route who pay the fare for the distance they travel




What is the gross vehicle weight of vehicle?


It is the weight of empty vehicle plus the payload certified by the registering authority.  




What is invalid carriage?


It is the vehicle specially designed for the use of persons suffering from physical defects or disability and essentially used for or by such persons.




Which are non-transport vehicles?


Vehicles used for non-commercial purposes by the registered owner for his own use. e.g motorcycle, motorcar .




Which are the transport vehicles?  


The Vehicle used for commercial purpose for carrying goods and passengers. e.g. Truck, buses, Tourist taxies.




I  have purchased a new car, how long I can use it without registering with RTO?


1. No person can drive a motor vehicle, which is not registered with R.T.O.


2. No owner of a motor vehicle can allow or permit the use of unregistered vehicle.


3. No dealer of vehicle can deliver the unregistered motor vehicle to the purchaser. He can only deliver the vehicles which are     temporarily /permanently registered with R.T.O


4. Register your vehicle at the registering authority (RTO) in whosejurisdiction you reside or you have a place of business where the     vehicle is normally kept.




Can a vehicle registered in one state can be used in another state?


A vehicle registered in one state can be used in other state with the same registration number for temporary purpose. The registration number is valid throughout the India, but if vehicle is migrated to some other state for long use then the fresh registration number from the state the vehicle is migrated to needs to taken and taxes to be paid. Taxes paid at time of registration are motor vehicle taxes for that particular state not for India. For more details see NOC & transfer.  




I have lost registration certificate (RC Book) of my car where can I get new one?


You need to apply for duplicate registration certificate where your vehicle has been registered with.  




Can a RTO officer catch my vehicle for not paying motor vehicle taxes?


Taxation on motor vehicles is governed by the Bombay Motor Vehicles (BMV) Tax Act,1958. NO vehicle which is not duly registered and for which taxes are not paid can be used in public place. It is an offence to drive any vehicle for which taxes have not been paid. RTO official can detain / Seize your vehicle if you have not paid the taxes in time.




I have valid P.U.C. certificate obtained from authorised P.U.C. centre. Can I be stopped on road and


 asked to retest my vehicle by RTO Officer?  


Though possession of a valid PUC certificate is a legal requirement, RTO can stop your vehicle to undergo the fresh PUC testing if your vehicle is found emitting visible pollutants.  




Is a police on duty at traffic junctions belongs to RTO dept. ?


In city the job of traffic control is performed by the traffic branch of police. Thus the corps on duty in white shirts belongs to traffic branch of police. They are constabulary staff of traffic police regulating traffic at large. RTO dept doesn’t have constabulary staff. Officers of RTO are always in khaki uniform.  




Can I drive a vehicle without insurance?


No person can drive a vehicle in public place without a valid insurance certificate under section 147 of M. V. act.




What is the validity of fitness certificate?


Every transport vehicle must posses a valid fitness certificate, newly registered transport vehicles certificate is valid for first two years. It has to be renewed every year after inspection of vehicle by the concerned RTO.




How long is the registration certificate is valid for any vehicle?


In case of non transport vehicles like two wheelers and cars the registration certificate is valid for 15 years from date of first registration. And it is renewed after every five subsequent years. In case of transport vehicles like goods and passenger carriers the registration certificate is valid till certificate of fitness if valid.  




How can I renew the registration of my motorcycle and car?  


Submit your motorcycle and car which is mechanically fit, neat and clean along with form 25 duly filled along with registration certificate, taxation certificate and prescribed fees paid.


Your vehicle is inspected by the inspector of motor vehicles and if he is satisfied the registration is renewed.




Can RTO cancel the valid certificate of fitness at any time?  


RTO is empowered to cancel the valid fitness certificate if your vehicle is caught in mechanically unfit and unroadworthy condition




What to do if a checking report / memo / challan is issued to  my vehicle by RTO?


RTO official can issue you a memo for the breach of provisions of motor vehicle act and rules. Such a memo essentially consist of description of the offence, seal and signature of the issuing authority. Normally the documents are impounded for minor offence’s whereas a vehicle is detained for the offences like failure to pay the Bombay motor vehicle taxes, overloading of vehicle, plying without certificate of fitness and permit, clandestine operation of passengers.


Report to the concerned RTO office along with all valid documents of vehicle within the time mentioned in the memo. You would either be prosecuted in the court of law or asked to pay the compounding fee (penalty) as the case may be.  




Is there any speed limit to drive the vehicle?  


No person shall drive a motor vehicle in any public place at a speed exceeding the maximum speed.


Class of vehicles 

Speed limit  Km/hrs

Light motor vehicle (Non transport)

No limit

Light motor vehicle (Transport )


Motor cycle


Passenger/goods vehicles


Medium / Heavy vehicles







Is there any code to paint the number plates?  


Colour – code for number plates:-   



 Class of vehicles

Background  Colour

Foreground Colour


Non-transport vehicle

White Black

Transport vehicle 

Yellow Black
3. Vehicle with temporary
Yellow Red 
4. Vehicle on trade certificate Red  White 
5. Vehicle on Rent-a-cab Black Yellow
6. Vehicle belonging to diplomatic officer (Delhi) Dark blue White
7. Vehicle belonging to diplomatic officer
(Other than Delhi)
Yellow Black