Many vehicle owners who purchased BS-IV vehicles after the COVID-19 lockdown and those who bought vehicles in December last year, but could not get their vehicles registered, are now left in the lurch. Those buyers who obtained a temporary registration before the country went into lockdown, but did not supply the vehicle chassis number to FADA by April 3, are also staring at losses as these vehicles are unlikely to be registered now.
"Prior to the lockdown, different RTOs sought different clarifications, documents, etc for the registration of BS-IV vehicles. Due to the sudden lockdown and thereafter multiple orders from the Supreme Court, the said vehicles could not get registered," said Abhishek Gupta, Joint Secretary of the All India Transporters' Welfare Association (AITWA). Prolonged lockdowns in states such as Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu also kept registration activity slow, he added.
Following an SC hearing in the matter on July 8, the grace period for registering vehicles between May 3 and May 13, provided for the registration of 10 percent of total unsold BS-IV vehicles -- which were part of an affidavit of over 2 lakh vehicles submitted to the court -- was retracted, and these vehicles could not be registered.
These account for approximately 5,000 vehicles documented in the affidavit. FADA's affidavit to the SC mentions approximately 5000 vehicles sold in 10 days after the lockdown was lifted. BS-IV vehicles sold before March 31, but not registered will be allowed to be registered post verification of details on the VAHAN database by MoRTH, the court said. A final decision on the matter is still pending.
The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) has said that it has "requested various government bodies to allow registration of BS-IV vehicles sold before March 31", and has "emphasised to MoRTH to highlight that these vehicles have been rightfully sold" to the end consumer.Once a vehicle is sold to a customer by an auto dealer, the registration process involves three-four steps. These processes also differ in different states. In some states, the registration process can be completed entirely online, in others, physical documents are required to be submitted. An auto dealer, however, can make an entry on the government's VAHAN dashboard as soon as the sale of a vehicle takes place. Full registration, on the other hand, requires more steps.