Getting a driving licence is obligatory for anyone who intends to drive a two- or four-wheeled vehicle on public roads in India.It is an official document issued under the Motor Vehicles Act of 1988 by the Regional Transport Office (RTO) or Regional Transport Authority (RTA). To drive legally in India, one must possess a valid driver’s licence, and operating a vehicle without one is a punishable offense. Fortunately, the process of applying for a driver’s licence has become much simpler and more convenient, with the option to apply online or offline.
The Significance of Holding a Driving License
In India, a driving license holds paramount importance as an official and legal document that grants you the privilege to operate a specific type of vehicle on public roads. Driving licenses are categorized based on the type of vehicle, including licenses for four-wheelers, two-wheelers, and commercial vehicles such as trucks and buses. These licenses also specify the permitted areas where you can drive your four-wheeler. Issued by the government, a driving license validates your eligibility and competence to drive on the roads, ensuring safety and adherence to traffic laws.
To obtain a driving license, you must pass officially documented driving tests, demonstrating your knowledge of traffic laws, rules, and regulations, particularly those related to your vehicle and license. This awareness helps you avoid violations that could lead to the suspension or revocation of your license.
A crucial requirement for driving legally in India is being at least 18 years old. Engaging in underage driving is a severe offense, and if caught driving a four-wheeler without meeting the legal age requirement, your parents or guardians may face the consequences of this violation.
Recognizing the significance of a driving license, it is as essential as having a motor insurance policy to ensure responsible and lawful driving on the roads.
Now that you understand the importance of holding a valid driving license, let’s delve into the various types of licenses available.
Difference Between a Learner’s License (LL) and a Permanent Driving License (DL)
Learner’s Driving Licence: When you begin driving a four-wheeler, you cannot immediately obtain a permanent license. Instead, the Road Transport Authority issues you a learner’s license. This license remains valid for six months, during which you must learn to drive responsibly and cautiously. Throughout this period, it is essential to be accompanied by a more experienced driver who will be present in the car to offer guidance, help navigate heavy traffic, and provide moral support in challenging situations.
Permanent Driving Licence: After completing the six-month learning phase, the Regional Transport Office will grant you a permanent driving license. To be eligible, you must be at least 18 years old and have successfully passed the driving test conducted by the RTO. In India, if you do not pass the driving test, you can retake it after a seven-day waiting period.
Applying for a permanent license has become swift and convenient, thanks to the online process. This license is issued for private cars and bikes and signifies that the RTO acknowledges you as a competent driver.
During this period, you are likely to use your car more frequently. It is advisable to have motor insurance right after purchasing your car, and this is also an ideal time to secure a car insurance policy to safeguard your vehicle from potential damages.
There are two methods to apply for a four-wheeler driving licence
Applying Online for a 4 Wheeler Driving Licence
Applying for a four-wheeler driving licence online is a hassle-free and efficient method. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you through the process:
Step 1: Visit the Official Website Go to parivahan.gov.in and click on the “Driving Licence Related Services” link under the online services category.
Step 2: Choose Your State Select the state from where you wish to apply for the driving licence.
Step 3: Select “Apply for a Driving License” Click on the option to apply for a driving licence.
Step 4: Fill in Applicant Information Complete the application form with your personal details and required information.
Step 5: Upload Scanned Copies of Documents Upload scanned copies of essential documents like age proof and address proof.
Step 6: Pay the Application Fee Proceed to pay the application fee through the online payment gateway.
Step 7: Schedule the Driving Licence Test Select a suitable date and time to schedule your driving licence test.
Step 8: Take the Driving Licence Test Show up for the driving licence test at the designated location and time.
Step 9: Receive Your Driving Licence If you pass the test, your driving licence will be sent to your registered address.
Benefits of Applying Online
Applying for a driving licence online offers several advantages, including:
- Convenience: You can access the application form and submit it from the comfort of your home, avoiding long queues at the RTO.
- Faster Processing: Online applications are processed more quickly, reducing waiting times.
- Easy Document Submission: Uploading scanned copies of documents simplifies the application process.
- Test Appointment Scheduling: You can choose a convenient date and time for your driving test.
- Home Delivery: If you pass the test, your driving licence will be delivered to your doorstep.
Documents Required for Online Application
To apply for a driving licence online, you’ll need the following documents:
- Age Proof (Any one of the following):
- School matriculation certificate
- Birth certificate
- Attested copy of the passport
- PAN Card
- Address Proof (Any one of the following):
- Ration Card
- State or Central Government payslip
- Voter ID
- Valid passport
- LIC policy bond
- Other Documents:
- Learner’s licence
- Application form 4
- Three passport size photographs
Applying Offline for a 4 Wheeler Driving Licence
Applying for a driving licence offline requires visiting the nearest RTO and following these steps:
Step 1: Obtain Form 4 Download Form 4 from the official state transportation website or collect it from the nearby RTO.
Step 2: Fill in the Application Form Complete the application form and submit it along with other required documents like age proof and address proof.
Step 3: Pay the Application Fee Pay the application fee at the RTO counter.
Step 4: Schedule the Driving Test Schedule a date and time for your driving test.
Step 5: Take the Driving Test Appear for the driving test at the RTO office.
Step 6: Receive Your Driving Licence If you pass the test, you will be issued a driving licence.
Benefits of Applying Offline
While online applications offer convenience, some individuals may prefer the offline method for various reasons, such as personalized assistance at the RTO office.
Things to Keep in Mind
- Review Your Form: Check the application form for any mistakes or omissions before submission.
- Bring Original Documents: Carry original documents when going for the driving test.
- Validity of Learner’s Permit: A learner’s permit is valid for only six months.
- Provide Genuine Documents: Avoid including false documents, as it may lead to legal consequences.
- Include Learner’s Licence Copy: Don’t forget to include a copy of your learner’s licence when you apply for a driving licence.
- Follow the Rules: Never ride or drive without a valid licence or identification, and don’t drive with a learner’s permit without a permanent licence holder present.
What Documents Are Required for Vehicle Registration?
When applying for a driving licence, you must provide the following information regarding your vehicle:
- Certificate of Registration
- Proof of Auto Insurance
- Health Certification (For Transport Vehicles)
- Proof of Tax Payments
What is the Validity Period of a Learner’s Licence?
The validity of a Learner’s Licence is six months from the date of issuance.
Does a Learner’s Licence Issued in Delhi Hold Validity Across India?
Yes, a Learner’s Licence issued in any state or Union territory remains valid throughout the country for the duration of its validity.
Will I Receive a Refund if I Fail My Driving Test?
No, there will be no refund provided if you do not clear your driving test.
Despite Withdrawing, the Fees for a Vehicle Class Still Show as Pending. What Should I Do?
If the fees for a class of vehicle still show as pending even after withdrawal, contact the Transport Department or your Zonal office and submit the original documents. Alternatively, you can reach out to them through their helpdesk service.
I Hold a Driving Licence Issued by One State and Wish to Apply for Another from a Different State. Is This Possible?
No, irrespective of where you apply, a permanent Driving Licence is issued from the same state where your Learner’s Licence was issued.
How Can I Retrieve My Lost Application Number?
To retrieve your lost application number, visit https://sarathi.parivahan.gov.in/, select your concerned state, and click on ‘Application number’ under the ‘Others’ menu.
Is a Driving Test Required for an International Driving Permit?
No, a driving test is not required for an international driving permit. Your Permanent Driving Licence serves as proof of your driving skill for authorities in foreign countries.
What Test is Necessary to Obtain a Commercial Driving Licence?
To get a Commercial Driving Licence, you need to perform a test that involves moving forward and reverse on a track without touching the line under any circumstances.
Obtaining a driving licence is a crucial step for anyone wanting to drive legally on Indian roads. Whether you choose to apply online or offline, it’s essential to provide accurate information and genuine documents. Remember to abide by the rules and regulations and never drive without a valid licence.
By following the simple steps and adhering to the guidelines, you can secure your four-wheeler driving licence and enjoy the freedom and responsibility of driving on the roads of India.