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Smart Card Driving License Application Process

Traditionally, a driving license was only issued in a book form, but with technological advancement, getting a smart card driving license has become easy. As opposed to the old book model, the smart card driving license has gained immense popularity/has become a preferred choice all due to its durability, portability/movability (portable or mobile nature).

Often with regular usage of driving license in a book model, the pages of the book tend to fall apart and at the end, people are stuck, waiting for a duplicate driving license to be issued.

Getting a smart card license is hassle-free and easy to carry as opposed to the conventional book form. So, mainly due to this reason, traditional driving licenses are slowly being replaced with the smart card one.

The Regional Transport Department has been given the authority to issue smart card driving licenses. However, a smart card driving licence is not issued in all the Indian states. So first, it’s necessary for you to find out if your state issues a smartcard driving license or not.

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What is a Smart Card Driving License?

A smart card driving license is an upgraded/modern version of a driving license. All the information about the driving license holder is stored electronically in a plastic, tamper-proof card that has a microprocessor chip of 64 kb memory. The data of an individual is computerised using biometrics and includes details such as blood group, fingerprints, a scan of the retina, body marks, etc.

The biometric data can be accessed by RTO/ARTO office via their office servers and provide a unique identity to each driving license holder. Thus, having a smart card license proves beneficial for the DL holder as well as the traffic police department to track an individual’s information. Also, using this card negates the risk of it being torn, getting wet or getting mutilated.

Another useful advantage of having this smart card is that an individual’s data is kept safe and it also helps the transport department keep a trace and track any traffic rule defaulters.

What are the Advantages of having Smart Card Driving License?

Having a smart card driving license is one of the best identity documents one can avail as it’s easy to carry and can hold all the information about an individual.

Here are a few advantages of having a smart card driving license:

  • The smart card driving license stores all the information about a driving license owner in a safe way.
  • A normal driving license is issued in a book form, mentioning all the information about an individual. But a smart card DL is updated with all the data available in the driving license in the book form plus additional information such as biometrics, personal details, etc.
  • There is no chance of your smart card license getting tampered with, as your details are readable only when the card is inserted in special handheld devices. The information of the data can only be accessed by traffic police to verify your identity and authenticity of your driving license.
  • The information stored in a smart card driving license cannot be erased and can only be modified. This provides for a good source of a permanent audit trail.
  • A smart card driving license prevents the issuance of fake registration certificate and bogus driving licenses.
  • You will no longer have to worry that your DL will get torn or mutilated.
  • A smart card can withstand extreme climatic conditions and a DL holder can use it anywhere, anytime, under any condition.

Eligibility Criteria for Smart Card Driving License

The eligibility criteria for getting a smart card driving license is the same as getting a traditional driving licence.

  • To apply for a smart card driving licence for motorcycle with gear and an engine capacity exceeding 50CC, the applicant must be at least 18 years old.
  • To apply for a smart card driving licence for motorcycle with gear and an engine capacity of up to 50CC, the applicant must be at least 16 years old.
  • In case the applicant is under 18 years old, then he must obtain a letter of consent from a parent or guardian.

What are the Required Documents for Smart Card DL?

While applying for a smart card driving license, you will have to submit the below-mentioned documents:

Address proof: For getting a smart card license, you can submit any of the below documents for submitting your address proof:

  • House agreement
  • Recent utility bills i.e. gas or electricity bill
  • Ration card
  • Passport
  • Aadhar Card
  • If you are residing in an another city, then you will have to submit a copy of your registered rental agreement and LPG/electricity bill

Age proof: For getting a smart card licence, you can submit any of the below documents as your age proof:

  • Birth certificate
  • Pan card
  • Passport
  • SSC certificate
  • School transfer certificate with the date of birth printed on it

Other documents:

Passport size photographs Duly filled form 4 (permanent license form), Form 1 (application cum declaration of physical fitness) form and 1A(medical certificate) and smart card licence form.

You can get the forms from your nearest RTO office or can download it online.

How to apply for smart card license in India?

In India, you can apply for smart card driving license offline and online too. The application process becomes easier when you know about the step-by-step process involved in getting a smart card driving license online or offline.

The application process for getting smart card driving license online

With technological advancement, getting a smart card driving licence online has become a simpler process. If smart card driving licenses are offered in your state, then you can apply for it online.

All you need to do is follow the below steps that can help you get a smart card driving license in a simple way.

  • Visit your state transport department’s website and download the online application form for smart card driving license.
  • After filing the form, attach all the required documents.
  • Visit your nearest RTO office and submit the duly filled form along with the required documents. Schedule an appointment for your driving test.
  • You will have to pay the required fees for your application to be processed.
  • You can then take then driving test.
  • Following this, if you pass the test, your biometrics will be recorded. This will include your fingerprints, photographs, the scan of your retina, etc.
  • You will then have to verify all the information recorded and can correct the same in case of any errors.
  • If you pass your driving test, then the SCDL will be sent to your registered address.

The application process for getting smart card driving license offline

If you don’t wish to go through the smart card driving license online process, then you can get one offline without any hassles.

Follow the below steps to get your driving license offline at your RTO

  • Check if your state has smart card driving licence facility. If you already have a permanent licence, then you can get it converted to a smart card one. All you have to do is visit the RTO, fill the application form, pay the fees and record your biometric details.
  • If you hold a learner’s license, then you can get the application form for smart card license instead.
  • Fill all the required details, attach all the supporting documents and pay the fees.
  • Book a time slot for giving your driving test.
  • Be present at the venue at the given date and time.
  • If you pass the test, your biometric details will be recorded and the smart card driving license will be sent to your registered address.

Contents of a Smart Card Driving Licence Form

Anyone who qualifies to get a permanent driving license is eligible to get a smart card driving license. While applying for a smart card DL, it’s necessary to understand what all is covered in the application form.

The application form contains 3 parts mentioned below:

  • The visual inspection zone: Basic details such as the applicant’s name, address, date of birth, vehicle class, vehicle type and signature are mentioned under this section.

  • The machine-readable zone: This section contains details such as date of the issue of the DL, serial number of the chip, issuing authority details and license validity details.

  • The central motor vehicles rule: This section displays details such as qualification, endorsements, fines and other information. In case of a penalty, it also shows the date on which the DL owner was fined and the date on which the dues were settled.

FAQs on Smart Card Driving License

What is the fees for smart card driving licence?

The fees for smart card driving license is Rs. 200. The applicant will have to make the payment at the time of submission of the documents and the smart card DL form.

Do I have to give a driving test while applying for a smartcard driving license?

No, you don’t have to give a driving test while applying for a smart card driving license. If you already have a driving license in a book form, then you just have to fill and submit the smart card application form along with the relevant documents.

Does every state RTO offer smart card driving license?

No, only a few states in India offer a smart card driving license. To know whether the state which you reside in offers smart card DL, you will have to visit the RTO office and enquire about the same.

Is it mandatory to get a smart card driving license?

No it is not mandatory to get a smart card driving license, but today generally every state RTO issues a smartcard driving license as it’s easy to carry and maintain too.

How can I check if my state offers smart card driving license?

You can visit your state transport department’s website and check if your state offers a smart card driving license.

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