In 2019, the Indian Government introduced the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) with the primary objective to minimise pollution by 20-30% by the end of 2024. To achieve the objective, multiple steps were taken and one of them was to set pollution emission parameters for all categories of vehicles in India. All vehicles in the country undergo emission tests to ensure compliance with the emission norms specified by the governing body.
In India, a Pollution Under Control (PUC) certificate is an essential legal requirement specified by the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989. This certificate verifies that the vehicle adheres to the government's standard parameters to regulate pollution. Let’s understand this pollution certificate and how it benefits individuals:
Every vehicle, irrespective of the category, emits smoke. Periodic checks are conducted to keep the pollution levels in control. This is where the PUC certificate of a vehicle comes into play. This certificate is an indicator that a vehicle has successfully cleared the test. It further shows that the vehicle’s emissions align with specific pollution rules and do not harm the environment. Every vehicle plying on Indian roads must carry this certificate.
This pollution testing is conducted at authorised testing centres or petrol pumps. If a car or bike owner fails to produce a PUC certificate, they will be charged a penalty. However, even if an individual possesses an authentic PUC certificate, but their vehicle’s emission level is on the higher side, the certificate will be cancelled, and they will need to get a new certificate within 7 days.
The Pollution Under Control certificate is a legal requirement as per the Motor Vehicles Act, 1989. This is mandatory to curb the challenge of impending global warming and the rising air pollution in the country. As already stated, this certificate indicates that the vehicle is under the specified emission parameters. If the emission levels are under the prescribed limits, vehicle owners can ride the vehicle on the road legally.
Moreover, the validity of this vehicle pollution certificate is decided based on the readings shown in the test. When an individual purchases a new vehicle, a PUC certificate is provided, and the validity lasts for a year. After that, the vehicle needs to undergo periodic PUC tests, and a new certificate is issued every time.
Car or bike owners can obtain a PUC certificate online or offline from certified government-affiliated PUC centres and RTOs.
Below are the steps discussed to receive an online PUC certificate:
Step 1 - Visit the official website PUCC Parivahan
Step 2 - Input the vehicle’s registration number and the last 5 digits of VIN or chassis number
Step 3 - Enter the Captcha code that pops up after adding information and click on ‘PUC details’
Step 4 - This website will redirect individuals to a page with their emission test readings
Step 5 - Now, download the soft copy of PUC certificate
Following are the contents that comprise PUC certificate of vehicle:
A serial number that allows testing centres to supervise when the vehicle has undergone the test
Vehicle’s registration number
The accurate PUC test reading
The date of the test and expiry date of the certificate
Vehicle’s licence plate number
As per the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, pollution certificates for cars and bikes are essential. Otherwise, the car owner may have to pay a hefty penalty amount. To receive this certificate, individuals need to know about the testing parameters.
Following is the list of criteria that every vehicle owner should meet to qualify for the certificate:
Two or three-wheeler (2/4 stroke) manufactured on or prior to 31st March 2000, then the percentage of CO is 4.5, and the hydrocarbon is 9,000ppm
Two or three-wheeler (2 stroke) manufactured after 31st March, 2000, the CO percentage is 3.5 and hydrocarbon is 6,000ppm
Two or three-wheeler (4-stroke) manufactured after 31st March 2000, CO percentage is 3.5 and hydrocarbon is 4,500ppm
Four-wheelers manufactured per Pre-Bharat Stage- II norms, CO percentage is 3, and hydrocarbon is 1,500ppm
Four-wheelers manufactured per Bharat Stage II, III or subsequent norms, CO percentage is 0.5 and hydrocarbon is 750ppm
When individuals renew this certificate every 6 months, they can easily know about their vehicle’s pollution levels. Further, it also informs about a vehicle’s servicing requirements.
Besides, as per IRDAI regulations, producing an authentic and active pollution certificate is mandatory if an individual renews their third-party bike insurance policy. Moreover, it is a must-have document if a traffic police officer asks for it.
Furthermore, while proceeding with the car insurance policy check, insurers consider this certificate an important document while renewing the plan. Therefore, individuals who possess this certificate can be assured of a hassle free insurance policy renewal process and complete it online from anywhere and anytime.
Individuals planning to renew their two wheeler insurance policy from leading corporate agents like Bajaj Finance Limited must have a PUC certificate to complete the process without any interruption. Moreover, individuals are not required to coordinate with the insurance provider when renewing the policy online.
This process is similar to availing a car insurance policy where alongwith the vehicle’s registration certificate, a policyholder’s driving licence, and other relevant documents, the PUC certificate must be produced during the policy renewal process.
Thus, possessing a PUC certificate ensures that your vehicle’s emission is under control. Moreover, it is suggested to compare the benefits of each vehicle insurance policy before buying one.
With each passing year, where other insurance premiums tend to rise, car and bike insurance have a beneficial NCB, bringing down premium amounts.
No Claim Bonus is simply a perk given to policyholders for not making a claim in previous years. NCB in motor insurance can fetch up to a 20-50% discount on the payable premium amount by maintaining a claim-free record. NCB is not related to the make or age of the vehicle but solely on the claim record of the policyholder.
While purchasing a comprehensive motor insurance policy, you are generally not eligible for NCB unless in the case of NCB transfer. The policyholder will be eligible for NCB on the first renewal of the motor insurance policy, starting from 20%. This is applicable only if no claims have been made in the preceding years. The discount increases with every claim-free year up to a maximum of 50% at the end of five claim-free years.
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