It’s the 4th of May, and from today, a blanket ban on all kinds of sun film on car windows comes into place. Even if you had sun film that complied with the legal limits of transparency till now, you will have to remove it. The 17-page Supreme Court ruling that was published a few days ago is clear on this count.

Police forces across the country have been instructed to check and prosecute all cars that have sun film on their windows. In New Delhi, the fine is as high as Rs. 500 for the offence and the policeman has the right to scratch out the film from your car window. If you object, your car can be impounded.

  • SC bans all sun film
  • Even if your sub film’s transparency was within legal limits, after the new ruling, it has become illegal.
  • Applicable to all motor vehicles for now
  • Only factory-fitted tinted glass is legal
sun film ban india
Photo: Ad by Delhi Traffic Police announcing the sun film ban

What does the Court ruling say?

The Supreme Court was responding to a public interest litigation filed by one Avishek Goenka, stating that crimes against women, kidnapping and assault were being increasingly carried out in cars with black window film. He sought that all vehicles must have 100% transparent windows (100% visual light transmission or VLT). However, the court took into account Rule 100 of the 1989 Central Motor Vehicles Rules, which states that “the glass of windscreen and rear window of motor vehicles should have a visibility of at least 70% and that of side windows a minimum visibility of 50%. The specification of glass should conform to Indian Standards [ IS:2553 – Part 2 – 1992 ]. The front windscreen shall be of laminated safety glass, whose pieces do not fly in the event of a crash and edges would be less jagged than in case of ordinary glass.”

Based on this Rule, the Court has said that any car that comes factory-fitted with tinted glasses that conform to the 50% visual light transmission for side windows and 70% visual light transmission for front and rear windscreen is perfectly fine.

This is what the Supreme Court says in Para 18 of its ruling

“If the glass so manufactured already has the VLT as specified, then the question of further reducing it by any means shall be in clear violation of Rule 100 as well as the prescribed IS. Secondly, the rule requires a manufacturer to manufacture the vehicles with safety glasses with prescribed VLT. It is the minimum percentage that has been specified. The manufacturer may manufacture vehicle with a higher VLT to the prescribed limit or even a vehicle with tinted glasses, if such glasses do not fall short of the minimum prescribed VLT in terms of Rule 100. None can be permitted to create his own device to bring down the percentage of the VLT thereafter. Thus, on the plain reading of the Rule and the IS standards, use of black films of any density is impermissible. Another adverse aspect of use of black
films is that even if they reflect tolerable VLT in the day time, still in the night it would clearly violate the prescribed VLT limits and would result in poor visibility, which again would be impermissible.”

What does this mean for you?

For you, the car owner, this means that even if you had enjoyed the use of sun-film so far, you have no choice but to remove the film. Even the use of roller-blinds, curtains, stickers or any other material on the glass is illegal as per paragraph 23 of the Supreme Court order, which states:

“In light of the above discussion, we have no hesitation in holding that use of black films or any other material upon safety glass, windscreen and side windows is impermissible. In terms of Rule 100(2), 70% and 50% VLT standard are relatable to the manufacture of the safety glasses for the windshields (front and rear) and the side windows respectively. Use of films or any other material upon the windscreen or the side windows is impermissible in law. It is the VLT of the safety glass without any additional material being pasted upon the safety glasses which must conform with manufacture specifications.”

Is there anything one can do about this?

One can argue the benefits of sun film such as UV-ray protection and safety – by acting as a laminate sheet and preventing the glass from shattering on impact. The biggest benefit is also in terms of mileage and vehicle emissions. By using sun film cars reduce the load on their air conditioners, which in turn means they burn less fuel, therefore increasing mileage and reducing emissions. Film manufacturers like 3M, V-Kool, Garware and others can file a review petition with the court and seek a stay citing business losses, but it’s unlikely to really have any impact.

No doubt, the order is unfair to the larger population. It’s like saying demolish all walls in a city just because some men urinate on some walls. A blanket ban on all kinds of sun film is not the answer to fighting crime against women or preventing terrorism. There are no statistics to prove that majority of crimes are committed in vehicles with black tinted glasses.

Removing sun film also has its potential problems. If you have a defogger in the car, it could get damaged. Also the danger of scratching windows permanently by improper removal methods is very real. Click here for the proper steps to remove sun film

What are your thoughts on this court order against the use of sun film? Let us know.

46 replies

  1. Profile photo of petrohead
    petrohead answers:

    “demolish all walls in a city just because some men urinate on some walls” well said.

  2. Profile photo of Sabarish M Nair
    Sabarish M Nair answers:

    dis cant be possible…! every one doesnt hase de maony to buy BMW and BENZ…:-/ remember SUPREME COURT..!

  3. Profile photo of Arvind Dhande
    Arvind Dhande answers:

    first hang kasab

  4. Profile photo of Rohit Mehta
    Rohit Mehta answers:

    fckng governmnent has no brain!!!!!!

  5. Profile photo of Dhiraj Patra
    Dhiraj Patra answers:

    super, who won’t follow bring down him or her and slapped.

  6. Profile photo of Sharadh Srivastava
    Sharadh Srivastava answers:

    How I wish the SC would get its priorities and reasoning right…!
    “Ban all road construction work because some guys drive over the speed limit on them!”
    “Ban use of knives in the kitchen because some guys use them for murders!”
    “Ban all schools because some school products grow up to become criminals!”

    How I wish they could (enforce the) Supreme Court ban on use of loud music & crackers after 10pm with the same gusto and promptness! Unfortunately, this violation happens only in big ‘Farm-house Events’ where the same judges and cops are often ‘guests of honour!’ :-(

  7. Profile photo of mohit
    mohit answers:

    govt should allow 35% film as there is too hot in delhi.without film our car ac won’t work better.as far as for criminal purpose crime rate will decrease but will not end.

  8. Profile photo of Suchita Gupta Kesarwani
    Suchita Gupta Kesarwani answers:

    Respect supreme court decision, but its really like ….”Ban knives in kitchen as someone used them for murder”…… Ban of black films is perfectly fine, but the ban on UV protection films is really discouraging. Agin stating that no ban on company fitted tinted glass, assuming not tinted glasses but the UV protection films will be used for crime.

  9. Profile photo of Suchita Gupta Kesarwani
    Suchita Gupta Kesarwani answers:

    Further, persons with Z ot Z+ security have been exempted. what about a car gang-rape in a car of Z+ security personnel, when used by his/her family members or near relatives???? Is SC going to ban use of car/ vehicle of such a person by any other person, even by his/ her spouse and children???????

  10. Profile photo of Suchita Gupta Kesarwani
    Suchita Gupta Kesarwani answers:

    And what policy decision is going to be made on potentially increased cases of SKIN CANCER, sun burns and other potential skin problems in most of the parts of India with hot atmosphere, and specially in metro cities like Delhi, Mumbai etc. where most of the car-owners travel nearly more than 50kms a day. And what about the safety of an women driving alone her own car on highway…………… Probably soon we will see decision like “women are not allowed to drive alone….”

  11. Profile photo of Davinder Singh Randhawa
    Davinder Singh Randhawa answers:

    well said mr roshan

  12. Profile photo of Karan Davesar
    Karan Davesar answers:

    All the bureaucrats, high court & supreme court judges have the permission to drive their cars with films and curtains on.. so this ruling is not hampering their comfort as they are going to lead their lives as it is…its the common man which is bearing the brunt of their stupid judgement…

  13. Roshun Povaiah answers:

    Yes, I know a few women who have black film on their windows, because they feel more secure that way as no one can peep into the car to see who’s driving! Now even they become vulnerable because of this ruling.

  14. Profile photo of Raghav Gupta
    Raghav Gupta answers:

    indian gvnmnt really sucks….

  15. Profile photo of Raghav Gupta
    Raghav Gupta answers:

    now i think its time to use our mobile cameras to click pics of ane vip cars using films on ther cars and paste on facebook and tag mr. satyndr grg…..

  16. Profile photo of Lohith Raju
    Lohith Raju answers:

    govt is least bothered abt the frequent hike on the fuel.. now it has given another way or mode of income to the cops … govt is already sucking our blood like leeches now cops are the parasites on the leeches to suck their blood… guess wht .. we have to give a complete accountability for our hard earned money … but they are enjoying the cream with people’s money and on daily basis we find scams these days… govt or the SC has to think on other issues which we are facing .. unfortunately they are concentrating on foolish things. first try to bring the back money from the swiss bank and then provide a better facility n improve the lives of common man rather than making them to sit on thorns

  17. Profile photo of Pramod Menon
    Pramod Menon answers:

    stop voting. this ruling is utter nonsense. rather than discussing this issue in forums like this, people should go out on the streets and protest. In India people go out on the streets to protest even for hike on movie tickets, but not for a genuine cause. I installed 3M sunfilms on my car’s glasses just 2 weeks ago only. I spent 13k for it. I didnt install sun control films for more than a year after purchasing the car. I personally do not like altering the looks of the car and sun control films were a big NO for me since i believed it ruins the look of the car from my perspective. But the temperature is rising every day. I live in Bangalore. Bangalore is not the so called “pleasant” city any more. Drive in the sun for 10 mints and you will feel your skin burning in the sun. I am a native of Kerala. Mostly I drive to my home town in my car. Temperature in kerala is horrible. Before applying the sun film I went to kerala along with a couple of other friends. On our return journey all four of us were thoroughly exhausted by the unbearable heat and direct sunlight hitting our skins from the bare glass windows. I didnt have sun control films then. The AC was on full blow, still it could not cool the cabin. My wife who was sitting on the front seat spread a thick towel to escape the sunlight. My friends whom I thought would enjoy the drive were exhausted from the heat and once we reached back in Bangalore, they declared that they will never travel in a car again to kerala. This made me change my decision on sun control films and with half heart i went ahead installing 3M sunfilms. The most expensive (50% visibility ones) films. Hardly two weeks from that date I am facing a stupid rule by SC. If all women raped inside moving vehicles had black films, then why is not the SC ruling that all men who had a male organ will rape a woman one day? Utter nonsense. There are cargo vans, parcel vans etc which has close compartments like containers which are more comfortable for rapers. Why cant they ban those vehicles then? How can SC assume that rapes are happening only in cars or such smaller vehicles? I request all people who have concerns please come out and assemble for a good cause and protest against this God damn rule.

  18. Profile photo of raghuanand
    raghuanand answers:

    if its observed that illegal activities happen in cars with tinted glasses, same thing may also happen in the lodges, so why not keep them transparent too. this is most ridiculous. i wonder why sunfilm manufacturers are keeping quiet over this. of late most cars have dark tint and i am sure that these companies would have invested heavily on stock and why are the quiet… instead of bringing down the rising prices,, instead of looking at several other issues , why are the motorisits always penalised…..

  19. Profile photo of Jignesh Patel
    Jignesh Patel answers:

    First of of search for this idiot person named Avishek Goenka who had filed the petetion.

  20. Profile photo of Vikram Singh Kaushal ੴ
    Vikram Singh Kaushal ੴ answers:

    hum toh nahi utaarenge jo karna hai kar lo dat is my private car

  21. Profile photo of RK SHARMA
    RK SHARMA answers:

    It would have been ideal, if the Supreme Court had ordered that Police person carried an instrument that would measure the Visual Light Transmission(VLT). Any vehicle exceeding the limits specified be challaned . The VLT readings could also be shown to the offender driver/owner and print out given, so that the owner may confront the agency that fitted a film beyond the legal limits. It would be like it is done in case of measuring Alcohol content in blood to check drunkun driving.

  22. Profile photo of Divyananda Gowda
    Divyananda Gowda answers:

    Has anyone thought to file a petition to stay the order?does any of the NGO’s can do that ??

  23. Profile photo of Vasudev Tellakula Shivashankar
    Vasudev Tellakula Shivashankar answers:

    Appoint an agency to check the VLT and issue a clearance certificate like the Emission Certificate which can be displayed in the car. It’s ruthless to disturb the entire society for the fault of a few criminals. The decision definately needs a serious introspection and must have a practical viewpoint.

  24. Profile photo of Lohith Raju
    Lohith Raju answers:

    hey, i got to know that sun control films are allowed, i.e. 70% visibility from the front and rare and 50% visibility from the sides, is it true

  25. Roshun Povaiah answers:

    No, the supreme court order still stands until someone files a review petition and the court relents. Sunfilm of any transparency till then is banned.

  26. Profile photo of Abhijyoti Dutta Borah
    Abhijyoti Dutta Borah answers:

    how to file a petition to stay the order? how will we go outside in such indian summer?supreme court is not our god to follow everything ,i think.

  27. Profile photo of Jignesh Patel
    Jignesh Patel answers:

    @Abhijyoti : Companies like 3M and others have already filed the petetion but it is already rejected by our intelligent SC judge.

  28. Profile photo of Abhijyoti Dutta Borah
    Abhijyoti Dutta Borah answers:

    This seems to be just a shrewd corporate opponence between Indian SC and automobile industries , Govt is functioning like an aggresively competitive and profiteering commercial agency much unduly with the industries on the fundamental ground, that’s what I can understand in a common political discretion. Commoners are just scapegoats

  29. Profile photo of Keyur
    Keyur answers:

    India has high UV index. Following is an example of various UV levels in Mumbai at different point of time during the entire day. http://www.uvawareness.com/uv-index/uv-index.php?location=Mumbai Sun exposure to skin can result in Skin Cancer as described at http://www.sunsmart.com.au/skin_cancer/ Also there are serious health risks involved if skin is directly exposed to UV rays. Ref.: http://www.sunsmart.com.au/ultraviolet_radiation/the_health_risks/ Rather than imposing ban, hon. supreme court should study these facts with help of experts and allow 70% VLT sun films.

  30. Profile photo of Satyabhusan Hota
    Satyabhusan Hota answers:

    There are films which are completely transparent made for the front windscreen which are heat pasted. But those are expensive. Are there ok?

  31. Roshun Povaiah answers:

    According to the ruling, any kind of film is illegal, even though many of these films are beneficial.

  32. Profile photo of Amit Nain
    Amit Nain answers:

    this is not a gud judgement atleast previous leggalised percent should not be removed from the mirror this is bad one and really i dont like it and womens would be protect by right intension not by the transparency of mirror but it could by the transparency in working of police

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  34. Profile photo of a-d-s-mann
    a-d-s-mann answers:

    only previous VLT % with uv rays and heat rejection films of glasses should be permitable, as india comes close to topic of cancer which results in excessive rise in temp. thats the reason countries like dubai south africa north america have 5$ vlt for rear windows of vehicles to keep interiors cool,,,,,,

  35. Profile photo of a-d-s-mann
    a-d-s-mann answers:

    we request supreme court to lift up ban on films with amendment that anyone found vlt less than 70% 50% respectively challed for 5000 ….so simple my beloved judges of supreme court

  36. Profile photo of a-d-s-mann
    a-d-s-mann answers:

    our india is not developing country it is destructing country……………………………..

  37. Profile photo of a-d-s-mann
    a-d-s-mann answers:

    our indians always says we need change,,,,,,,,,,yes we need change in juridiction of supreme court,,,,we dont need white headed or bald head judges ,,,if one wants that his/her country should be develoed as other countries ,,,,so their should be young new generation juridiction in supreme court

  38. Profile photo of a-d-s-mann
    a-d-s-mann answers:

    supreme court now you will be responsible for …….dieses of skin like skin cancer,,,,,,,,etc

  39. Profile photo of Shibu Gopalan
    Shibu Gopalan answers:

    Its like saying ” Ban the rope all over india as its used for suicide by people” . Ambulances are used for such crimes as lot of FIR registered and filed to the courts. can we ban the ambulance. Who is actually the judges sitting in the supreme court without looking down into the major population of india. Please judges ban the hotel rooms, brothels, inner wear displays, sarees, internet, mobile phones, ambulances as well cos they all are used to attract, lure and kidnap women. Its stupidity whats taught in the law books, which has to be amended.

  40. Profile photo of Pavithran Pavi
    Pavithran Pavi answers:

    HANG THE JUDGE WHO GAVE SUCH A FOOLISH JUDGEMENT & BECAUSE OF U FOOL, THERE ARE LAKHS OF PEOPLE LEFT OUT IN BURNING SUN THAT TOO IN HEAVY TRAFFIC

  41. Profile photo of Pavithran Pavi
    Pavithran Pavi answers:

    REMOVING THE SUN FILM WOULD MAKE COPS INSPECT SEATBELT,CARRYING HEAVY LOAD, EXTRA PASSENGER TRAVELLING ETC ETC WHICH WOULD FURTHER MAKE MORE EARNINGS FOR THEIR POCKETS

  42. Ambika Prakash Tiwari answers:

    Really Sucks Indian Govt, What mean of this stupid, no nonance type of rule..?? Are Apraadh aise kam honge kya..? Canoon ko majboot banaao to apraadh vaise bhi kam ho jaayenge,lekin is govt ko bhi bas inocent logo ka nuksaan karne me , aur pareshan hota dekhne me maza aata hai, shame on this govt….

  43. Profile photo of Arya Gandhi
    Arya Gandhi answers:

    i know that sun films are banned, its end of 2014 and i still use a dark filming in my cars (i live in mumbai), but if you go to smaller cities, towns and villages today, you will see that most cars yet use sunfilms

  44. Profile photo of Arya Gandhi
    Arya Gandhi answers:

    if you install sunfilms in an expensive car like merc and bmw, you will not be caught…. because police never catch those kind of cars

  45. Profile photo of Arya Gandhi
    Arya Gandhi answers:

    Guys and girls, even though those sticker sunfilms are banned but you’re allowed to change the whole glass to a black glass, curtains and sunblocks are allowed. Only the sticker film is not.

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