Driving licenses to look same in all States – Central online database in the making

Currently, all States in India have different format for driving license.

Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has announced unified driving license and vehicle registration as a norm going forward. The development will be standard wef October 1, 2019. The simple idea behind the changes is having a driving licence that looks standard across the country. The move will include design changes as the new license is adapted across States so every driver has a similar looking DL or registration card.

Most interesting is the inclusion of a QR code, which upon being read will reveal a record of driver data, and any penalties registered against said driver. For this to work, a central online database will need to be setup. This will have a record of all vehicle and driver registrations.

Image for representation.

For the system to work as spontaneously and seamlessly as imagined, traffic coppers will be furnished with QR code readers to immediately access the central database, and quickly check on any past violations/offences. On the reverse side of the DL, an emergency contact number will be listed.

For the smart cards to work efficiently, State governments will install a chip and other required features. This includes a near field communication (NFC) feature so the cards can be read once scanned by a QR code reader.

New RC format.

The newly designed driving licenses for India will contain driver information, which includes any limitations for differently-abled drivers, and necessary vehicle modifications too will be detail. Vehicle registration cards will list vehicle and fuel type, engine type, vehicle class, emission details, and many other details that help identify a vehicle. Owner info and all necessary details related to vehicle registration will be mentioned in a simplified manner.

The government is cognisant of the fact that for these cards to work in the long-term they would need to be as good as new after normal wear and tear that comes with regular use. This would mean the cards don’t fall apart, peel off or fade over time. Both driver licence and vehicle registration card are formatted similarly. The chip implant will be on the front side, and QR code on the reverse end.