Andhra Pradesh

Transport Dept. not issuing PVC cards for a year now

Vehicle users in the State are deprived of the services of the Transport Department as the Finance Department has ‘twice vetoed’ the latter’s proposals of deducting the PVC card supplier’s charges before remitting the fee collected from vehicle users into the government’s account.

For more than a year now, the Transport Department has stopped issuing PVC cards for various services leaving the vehicle users a harassed lot. The department is unable to go ahead with its plans to print the cards in each of its offices as the Finance Department turned down its proposals.

According to information, the problem cropped up for two reasons: the old card supplier/contractor stopped their services as bills to the tune of ₹34 crore were kept pending. aLSO, the government did not finalise the terms for fresh tenders though the old contract ended years ago. The contract for supply of PVC cards ended two years ago but the government extended the agreement with the same vendor as a ‘one-time measure’ for a year as no other bidder came forward.

The government is yet to finalise the terms for a fresh tender. “Even the extended contract ended a year ago but the vendor, who delivered over 38 lakh cards, was not paid ₹34 crore,” sources say.

Though the government invited bids last year, there has been no response from the vendors as there is no guarantee on payments. To tide over the problem, Transport Minister Perni Venkataramaiah (Nani) came up with a suggestion that a card-printing unit be set up in each transport office to ensure same-day delivery. He also mooted the idea of remitting the fee to the government account in real-time after deducting the vendor’s charges.

“The Finance Department, however, disapproved of the Minister’s proposals and insisted that all fees should be directly credited into the government account in full,” sources say.

Now, the proposal has been laid for Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy’s consideration as it would be a win-win for all. “We hope this gets cleared this week,” says an official.

On an average, three lakh PVC cards with an electronic chip embedded inside it are issued per month in the State transport offices for new vehicles registered and driver’s licenses. As the issuance of PVC cards was stopped, there is a huge pendency of card deliveries for over a year. As things stand, it may take a few more months for the entire system to be restored, sources say.

The State government collects ₹200 per card, amounting to at least ₹72 crore per annum. Of this, ₹53 has to be paid to the supplier per card and another ₹25 goes towards consumables. This apart, the government levies a transaction fee of ₹400 on each user, IT user charge, testing fee and delivery charge. “The government earns over ₹200 crore per annum in the form of these charges,” says an official.

On the flip side, the traffic police are insisting on production of the physical cards, failing which penalties are being levied.

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Printable version | May 24, 2022 5:32:14 pm |