One-year wait to get driving licence cards in Visakhapatnam

Thousands of smart cards for Driving Licences and Registration Certificates are pending to be issued in every district due to the inordinate delay

Updated - January 20, 2023 09:13 am IST

Published - January 20, 2023 09:05 am IST - VISAKHAPATNAM

Traffic police verifying driving licence of students. File

Traffic police verifying driving licence of students. File | Photo Credit: Vijaya Bhaskar

The undue delays in the issuance of smart cards pertaining to Driving Licences (DL) and Registration Certificates (RC) for motor vehicles have become the subject of debate among DL and RC applicants for over two years now.

The Transport Department officials are said to have favoured switching over from the chip-based card to QR-coded card to tide over the shortage of chip readers. The QR-coded cards can be read by camera-enabled smartphones which gives an added advantage, according to official sources.

It’s learnt that the Transport officials from various districts, at a high-level conference held about a week ago, had suggested that the QR-coded card was a better option. The authorities concerned had written to the Principal Secretary but a G.O. has to be issued by the State government in this regard.

While the issuance of cards for DL has been pending for about a year, the RC cards have not been issued for the past six months in the Visakhapatnam district, according to reliable sources. Thousands of cards are pending to be issued in every district.

“The tender for selection of the contractor for the issuance of smart cards has been pending for the past two years. The Transport Department took up the e-Pragati project on the OTSI platform in 2017 but it was shifted to the NIC platform in 2020. The implementation of the project and its customisation was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” says another source.

It may be recalled that the issuance of smart cards was stopped temporarily in July 2020 due to the non-supply of smart cards by the private supplier. The supply was restored about a year later. But, the delays continued as the contractor had failed to supply the required cards, due to the shortage of chip-enabled cards, to the Transport Department.

Though the licenses were being generated online, the delays in the issue of the cards has been creating problems for motorists.

Whatever may be the reason, applicants are being made to wait for months on end for their DL and RC cards.

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