How to get an embossed number plate?Government aims to fit embossed number plates on 2.5 million vehicles in the next 15 months.
The government’s June 3 decision to make embossed number plates mandatory for all vehicles starting July 17 has drawn widespread criticism. The issue was also raised in Parliament following which the Department of Transport Management published a notice on June 7 clarifying that embossed number plates are not immediately mandatory for all vehicles and that the notice published on June 3 was based on a notice in Nepal Gazette last November.
Organising a press meet last week, Namaraj Ghimire, director general of the department, said only three categories of vehicles would have to be fitted with embossed number plates by July 17 in the Bagmati and Gandaki provinces—newly purchased vehicles after November 17, 2021; vehicles with new ownership transfers after February 13, 2022, and vehicles renewing registration certificates, known as bill book in Nepal, after May 15, 2022.
Although the government had introduced embossed number plates six years ago, only a few vehicle categories opted to have the new number plate. Critics say the government’s recent announcement came without preparation even after six years of the initial announcement.
Based on the government’s May 30, 2016 agreement, the department had to install embossed number plates on 2.5 million vehicles within five years. Data from the transport department show that only 25,000 vehicles, including government vehicles, have embossed number plates. Government agencies own an estimated 40,000 vehicles. Ghimire said the department is working to install embossed number plates on all 2.5 million vehicles in the next 15 months.
With the government’s decision, hundreds of people have been frequenting Transportation Offices in Kathmandu and Pokhara for embossed number plates. But most are unaware of the process of getting an embossed number plate for their vehicles.
Here’s how to get an embossed number plate:
What do you need before applying for an embossed number plate?
First, one must fill out an online form available at <hsenp.dotm.gov.np> followed by a visit to the designated transport office to pay for the service.
An applicant also has to carry a copy of the filled application form, payment voucher, a photocopy of the citizenship certificate along with copies of renewed bill book and its payment vouchers. If the vehicle is bought through a hire purchase scheme and is still owned by a financial institution, then one should take along the related documents.
The next step is verifying the application number, after which the applicant needs to undergo a biometric screening at the same office.
Once these steps are completed, the applicant qualifies for an embossed number plate.
Where will one get an embossed number plate?
The Department of Transport Management is responsible for issuing embossed number plates.
In Kathmandu Valley, the department will be distributing embossed number plates to qualified applicants from four different places.
For light four-wheelers, including cars, jeeps and vans, one has to visit the Vehicle Fitness Testing Centre at Teku; for heavy vehicles, the number plates are issued from the transport office at Ekantakuna, and for two-wheelers, one has to visit the transport office at Satungal.
Meanwhile, the transport office at Minbhawan will be distributing embossed number plates for government vehicles, according to Ishwari Datta Paneru, director and spokesperson of the department.
Similarly, in Pokhara, the embossed number plates are distributed from the Transport Office at Damsite.
How long does it take to get an embossed number plate?
It will take a day for an applicant to receive the embossed number plate after completing the due process if there is no crowd at the transport offices, said Paneru.
“But since the past week, the number of service seekers has shot up, so it may take over a week or two,” he said. “We have directed all transport offices to make the process more efficient and prompt.”
Madan Pokharel, chief of the Transport Office in Ekantakuna, said that the office receives at least 150 applications daily.
“Currently, we have the capacity to distribute only 60 embossed number plates per day. It will take well over two weeks to get a new number plate if the number of applicants continues to increase since we have a lot of pending applications,” said Pokharel.
According to him, currently the transport office at Satungal has been providing at least 300 embossed number plates per day for two-wheelers.
How much does it cost to get an embossed number plate for different categories of vehicles?
For two-wheelers, the cost of an embossed number plate is Rs 2,500; for three-wheelers (tempos), Rs 2,900; for light four-wheelers, including cars, jeeps and vans, Rs 3,200; and for heavy vehicles, it is Rs 3,600.
What are the four types of embossed number plates?
The number plates for government, diplomatic missions and private vehicles will be white but their numbers will be embossed in red, blue and black, respectively.
Public vehicles will have yellow plates and numbers embossed in black.