Srinagar: High Court (HC) on Thursday quashed the order issued by Regional Transport Officer (RTO), Kashmir, directing people to re-register their vehicles bought from outside J&K.
A Division Bench of Justice Ali Muhammad Magray and Vince Chatterji Koul was hearing two clubbed petitions filed, seeking quashing of the order issued by RTO Kashmir last month making re-registration of vehicles purchased outside J&K with 15 days mandatory.
The bench said that the life time tax that is levied at the point of registration of a vehicle in terms of Section 3 of the Motor Vehicles Act, cannot be levied, merely on a presumption that a vehicle registered outside J&K, has remained in the Union Territory for a period exceeding 12 months.
The court said that the impugned circular to the extent of asking the petitioners (vehicle owners) to have their vehicles registered for assignment of new registration mark without their declaration in tune with the mandate of Rule 54 of Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989 and without providing any mechanism, is quashed.
“By a writ of mandamus, the respondents (Administration) are directed to have the compliance of Section 47 of the Act, read with Rule 54 of Central Motor Vehicles undertaken for assignment of new registration mark of the vehicles,” it observed.
However, the court said notwithstanding above directions, ‘we leave it open for the respondents to screen, scrutinize, verify, validity/genuineness of documents of any vehicle entering in Union Territory of J&K from outside, having outside registration’.
RTO Kashmir on March 27 issued an order making re-registration of the vehicles purchased from outside J&K mandatory in keeping with the Motor Vehicle Act and Central Motor Vehicle Rules within 15 days.
Meanwhile, Police had appealed to the general public to go for the re-registration process of the vehicles purchased from outside J&K with local ARTO immediately failing which shall result in the seizure of the vehicle.