After the central government introduced a nationwide scrappage policy for old cars in India, the Law Ministry has given a green light to the final draft of the policy for vintage cars. The new draft policy will be notified by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and will be made into law.
A report by Indian Express claims that the proposed policy will bring relief to vintage car owners. For a long time, the owners of vintage vehicles were at loggerhead with the policymakers to exclude these cars from the scrappage policy. The new policy is made after elaborate deliberations with all the stakeholders on public comments over the past year.
Only cars that are over 50 years old will be considered vintage vehicles in India. According to the new policy, vintage cars cannot be used regularly like other cars on public roads. The new rules only allow vintage car owners to bring out these special vehicles on occasions or during events.
Also, the new rules restrict the use of vintage cars as commercial vehicles. It means that one will not be able to give the vintage cars on rent for occasions like marriages. Apart from these two restrictions, the owners of vintage cars are free to use their vehicles.
All the vintage cars will receive special registration plates, which will be provided by the authorities. How these registration plates will differ from the new High-Security Registration Plates is not known yet. The authorities are likely to reveal the guidelines once it becomes a law.
No more Vintage Motor Vehicle Committees
The earlier draft also had a provision to set up Vintage Motor Vehicle committees at the state and the Union Territory levels. These committees would have worked to govern the usage of the vintage vehicles and will also take care that the vehicle owners follow the clauses. However, as per the sources of TIE, there are no such committees included in the new draft.
According to the current rules, there are no provisions to regulate the registration process of vehicles of heritage value. The new rules will be inserted as sub-rules 81A, 81B, 81C, 81D, 81E, 81F, 81G in the Central Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989 (CMVR).
A government official said,
“These are not like cars plying on roads. They are maintained by collectors and owners as passion and hobby. The policy will reflect that and India will finally have an ecosystem that defines and maps vintage cars,”
Various vintage car associations and enthusiasts filed petitions against the curbs on the ownership of vintage cars. The owners made an argument that these vehicles are never used as regular ordinary cars and the same rules should not apply to them.
There will be a centralised government portal for the registration of vintage cars. Any vehicle including two-wheelers and four-wheelers that is 50 years old according to its first registration will be eligible under the new draft.