The Centre has confirmed that it allows the use of DigiLocker or mParivahan platforms to present the driving license and vehicle registration papers in ‘electronic form’. A notification has been sent to states in this regard, an agency report said. It also said that impounding of documents will be reflected electronically through ‘eChallan’ system.

“The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has issued an advisory to states to accept Driving Licence, Registration Certificate or other documents in ‘electronic form’ presented through DigiLocker or mParivahan platform as valid under the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and treat them at par with the certificates issued by the transport authorities,” according to the ministry’s statement.

This is in response to a number of grievances and RTI applications received in the ministry where citizens have raised the issue that the documents available in DigiLocker or the mParivahan app are not considered valid by the traffic police or the motor vehicles department, when asked to produce.

These electronic records available on DigiLocker or mParivahan are deemed to be legally recognised at par with the original documents as per the provisions of the Information Technology Act, 2000.

The advisory said that DigiLocker and mParivahan have the ability to pull a citizen’s documents into electronic form. It added that the Insurance Information Board is uploading data related to insurance of new vehicles and renewal of insurance in the electronic database on a daily basis.

The ministry added that the state authorities do not need to physically seize documents when they have to be impounded. The agencies can simply have the impounding reflected in the electronic database.

The ministry’s advisory comes days after the Bihar transport department decided to accept documents from DigiLocker. The Centre had integrated DigiLocker with the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways in September 2016 to allow people to store a digital version of their driving licence and vehicle documents on the platform.

Bipin Sasi

Bipin Sasi is a seasoned journalist and a political observer from India. He can be reached at bipin514@gmail.com for any comments and suggestions.