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THE MOTOR VEHICLE ACT, 1988

Title : THE MOTOR VEHICLE ACT, 1988

Year : 1988



Any rule which the Central Government or the State Government is empowered to make under this Act may, notwithstanding the absence of any express provision to that effect, provide for the levy of such fees in respect of applications, amendment of documents, issue of certificates, licences, permits, tests, endorsements, badges, plates, countersignatures, authorisation, supply of statistics or copies of documents or orders and for any other purpose or matter involving the rendering of any service by the officers or authorities under this Act or any rule made thereunder as may be considered necessary:

Provided that the Government may, if it considers necessary so to do, in the public interest, by general or special order, exempt any class of persons from the payment of any such fee either in part or in full.



(1) The power to make rules under this Act is subject to the condition of the rules being made after previous publication.

(2) All rules made under this Act shall be published in the Official Gazette, and shall unless some later dale is appointed, come into force on the date of such publication.

(3) Every rule made by any State Government shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made before the State Legislature.

(4) Every rule made by the Central Government under this Act, every scheme made by the Central Government under sub-section (1) of section 75 and sub-section (1) of section 163 and every notification issued by the Central Government under sub-section (4) of section 41, sub-section (1) of section 58, sub-section (1) of section 59, the proviso to sub-section (I) of section 112, 1*[sub-section (4) of section 163A] and sub-section (4) of section 213 shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament while it is in session for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the rule, scheme or notification or both Houses agree that the rule or scheme should not be made or the notification should not he issued, the rule, scheme or notification shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect is the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule, scheme or notification.

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1. Inserted by Act 54 of 1994, Section 62 (w.e.f. 14-11-1994).

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(1) The State Government may, for the purpose of carrying into effect the provisions of the Act, establish a Motor Vehicles Department and appoint as officers thereof such persons as it thinks fit.

(2) Every such officer shall be deemed to be a public servant within the meaning of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (45 of 1860).

(3) The State Government may make rules to regulate the discharge by officers of the Motor Vehicles Department of their functions and in particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power to prescribe the uniform to be worn by them, the authorities to which they shall be subordinate, the duties to be preformed by them, the powers (including the powers exercisable by police officers under this Act) to be exercised by them, and the conditions governing the exercise of such powers.

(4) The Central Government may, having regard to the objects of the Act, by notification in the Official Gazette, prescribe the minimum qualifications which the said officers or any class thereof shall possess for being appointed as such.

(5) In addition to the powers that may be conferred on any officer of the Motor Vehicle Department under sub-section (3), such officer as may be empowered by the State Government in this behalf shall also have the power to,-

(a) Make such examination and inquiry as he thinks fit in order to ascertain whether the provisions of this Act and the rules made thereunder are being observed;

(b) With such assistance, if any, as he thinks fit, enter, inspect and search any premises which is in the occupation of a person who, he has reason to believe, has committed an offence under this Act or in which a motor vehicle in respect of which such offence has been committed is kept:

Provided that,-

(i) Any such search without a warrant shall be made only by an officer of the rank of a Gazetted Officer;

(ii) Where the offence is punishable with fine only the search shall not be made after sunset and before sunrise;

(iii) Where the search is made without a warrant, the Gazetted Officer concerned shall record in writing the grounds for not obtaining a warrant and report to his immediate superior that such search has been made;

(c) Examine any person and require the production of any register or other document maintained in pursuance of this Act, and take on the spot or otherwise statements of any person which he may consider necessary for carrying out the purposes of this Act;

(d) Seize or take copies of any registers or documents or portions thereof as he may consider relevant in respect of an offence under this Act which he has reason to believe has been committed;

(e) Launch prosecutions in respect of any offence under this Act and to take a bond for ensuring the attendance of the offender before any court;

(f) Exercise such other powers as may be prescribed;

Provided that no person shall be compelled under this sub-section to answer any question or make any statement tending to incriminate himself.

(6) The provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) shall, so far as may be apply to any search or seizure under this section as they apply to any search or seizure under the authority of any warrant issued under section 94 of the Code.



(1) When an appeal has been preferred or an application for revision has been made against any order passed by an original authority under this Act, the appeal or the application for revision shall not operate as a stay of the order passed by the original authority and such order shall remain in force pending the disposal of the appeal or the application for revision, as the case may be, unless the prescribed appellate authority or revisional authority otherwise directs.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), if an application made by a person for the renewal of permit has been rejected by the original authority and such person has preferred an appeal or made an application for revision under this Act against such rejection, the appellate authority or, as the case may be, the revisional authority may by order direct that the permit shall, notwithstanding the expiration of the term specified therein, continue to be valid until the appeal or application for revision is disposed of.

(3) No order made by a competent authority under this Act shall be reversed or altered on appeal or revision on account of any error, omission or irregularity in the proceedings, unless it appears to the prescribed appellate authority or revisional authority, as the case may be, that such error, omission or irregularity has, in fact, occasioned a failure of justice.



(1) The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, constitute for the country a National Road Safety Council consisting of a Chairman and such other members as that Government considers necessary and on such terms and conditions as that Government may determine.

(2) A State Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, constitute for the State a State Road Safety Council consisting of a Chairman and such other members as that Government considers necessary and on such terms and conditions as that Government may determine.

(3) A State Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, constitute District Road Safety Committee for each district in the State consisting of a Chairman and such other members as that Government considers necessary and on such terms and conditions as that Government may determine.

(4) The Councils and Committees referred to in this section shall discharge such functions relating to the road safety programmes as the Central Government or the State Government, as the case may be, may, having regard to the objects of the Act, specify.



(1) If any difficulty arises in, giving effect to the provisions of this Act, the Central Government may, by order published in the Official Gazette, make such provisions, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act as appear to it to be necessary or expedient for removing the difficulty:

Provided that no such order shall be made after the expiry of a period of three years from the date of commencement of this Act.

(2) Every order made under this section shall, as soon as may be after it is made, be laid before each House of Parliament.



(1) The Motor Vehicles Act, 1939 (4 of 1939) and any law corresponding to that Act in force in any State immediately before the commencement of this Act in that State thereafter in this section referred to as the repealed enactments) are hereby repealed.

(2) Notwithstanding the repeal by sub-section (1) of the repealed enactments,-

(a) Any notification, rule, regulation, order or notice issued, or any appointment or declaration made, or exemption granted or any confiscation made, or any penalty or fine imposed, any forfeiture, cancellation or any other thing done or any other action taken under the repealed enactments, and in force immediately before such commencement shall, so far as it is not inconsistent with the provisions of the Act, be deemed to have been issued, made, granted, done or taken under the corresponding provision of this Act;

(b) Any certificate of fitness or registration or licence or permit issued or granted under the repealed enactments shall continue to have effect after such commencement under the same conditions and for the same period as if this Act had not been passed;

(c) Any document referring to any of the repealed enactments or the provisions thereof, shall be construed as referring to this Act or to the corresponding provisions of this Act;

(d) The assignment of distinguishing marks by the registering authority and the manner of display on motor vehicles in accordance with the provision of the repealed enactments shall, after the commencement of this Act, continue to remain in force until a notification under sub-section (6) of section 41 of this Act is issued;

(e) Any scheme made under section 68C of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1939 (4 of 1939) or under the corresponding law, if any, in force in any State and pending immediately before the commencement of this Act shall be disposed of in accordance with the provisions of section 100 of this Act;

(f) The permits issued under sub-section (1A) of section 6SF of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1939 (4 of 1939) or under the corresponding provision, if any, in force in any State immediately before the commencement of this Act shall continue to remain in force until the approved scheme under Chapter VI of this Act is published.

(3) Any penalty payable under any of the repealed enactments may be recovered in the manner provided by or under this Act, but without prejudice to any action already taken for the recovery of such penalty under the repealed enactments.

(4) The mention of particular matters in this section shall not be held to prejudice or affect the general application of section 6 of the General Clauses Act, 1897 (10 of 1897) with regard to the effect of repeals.

217A - 1* Renewal of permits, driving licences and registration granted under the Motor Vehicles Act, 1939

Notwithstanding the repeal by sub-section (1) of section 217 of the enactments referred to in that sub-section, any certificate of fitness or registration or licence or permit issued or granted under the said enactments may be renewed under this Act.

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1.Inserted by Act 27 of 2000, section 5 (w.e.f. 11.8.2000).

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Schedule 1

1*[THE FIRST SCHEDULE

MANDATORY SIGNS OF THE FIRST SCHEDULE OF THE MOTOR VEHICLES ACT, 1988

No. M. 1.-- Stop

No. M 4A -- One way sign -- Vehicles Prohibited in one Direction

No. M 6 --All Motor Vehicles Prohibited

No. M 9 --Bullock Carts Prohibited

No. M 12 -- Cycle Prohibited

No. M 15 -- Left Tum Prohibited

No. M 18 -- Horns Prohibited

No. M 20 -- No Stopping or Standing

No. M 22 -- Width Limit

No. M 25 -- Load Limit

No. M 28 -- Compulsory Turn Left

No. M 31 -- Compulsory Ahead or Turn Right

No. M 34 -- Compulsory Cycle Track

Cautionary signs of the First Schedule of The Motor Vehicles Act, 1988

No. C 1 -- General Design

No. C 4 -- Right Hair Pin Bend

No. C 7 -- Left Reverse Bend

No. C 10 -- Narrow Road Ahead

No. C 13 -- Slippery Road

No. C 16 -- Pedestrian Crossing

No. C 19 -- Cattle

No. C 22 -- Cross Road

No. C 25 -- Side Road Left

No. C 26C -- Y -- Intersection

No. C 28B -- Staggered Intersection

No. C 30 -- Roundabout

No. C 33 -- Barrier Ahead

No. C 35 -- Unguarded Level Crossing

No. C 37 -- Guarded Level Crossing

PART C

Informatory signs of the First Schedule of The Motor Vehicles Act, 1988

No. E 1 -- Advance Direction Sign

No. E 4 -- Re-Assurance Sign

No. E 7 -- Petrol Pump

No. E 10 -- Eating Place

No. E 13 -- No Thorough Road

No. E 16 -- Parking Both Sides

No. E 19 -- Parking Lot -- Taxis

No. E 22 -- Flood Gauge

Explanatory Notes

(i) Normal Size, wherever specified, is the minimum size of the sign which is intended to be used in rural areas on highways declared to be National Highways or State Highways under any law for the time being in force in such rural areas;

(ii) The Small Size, wherever specified is the minimum size of the sign which is intended to be used,-

(a) On all roads, other than the said National Highways and the State Highways, in the rural areas, and

(b) On all roads within the urban areas:

Provided
that sign of any appropriate size may be used on ballards or alongside traffic light signals on such roads;

(iii) The colour scheme of these signs shall be as specified therein and the reverse side of all such sign plates shall be painted grey;

(iv) The posts of all these signs shall be painted in 25 cms. wide bands, alternatively black and none and the lowest band next to the ground shall be black;

(v) The definition plate, wherever specified with a sign where required to make the meaning of a sign more explicit shall have none background, black letters and black border 20 mm. wide and shall be of adequate size for legibility but not too large as to be obtrusive.]

Schedule 2

2*[THE SECOND SCHEDULE
[Section 163 A]

SCHEDULE FOR COMPENSATION FOR THIRD PART FATAL ACCIDENT/INJURY CASES CLAIMS


1.Fatal Accidents:

Annual Income         Rs. 3000    Rs. 4200    Rs.5400    Rs. 6600    Rs. 7800    Rs. 9000    Rs. 10200      Rs.11400      Rs. 12000    Rs. 18000    Rs. 24000    Rs. 36000    Rs. 40000

AGE OF VICTIM 

                        MULTIPLIER    RUPEES IN THOUSANDS

compensation in case of death

          Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.    Rs.
Up to 15 yrs.    .....15    60    84    108    132    156    180    204    228    240    360    480    720    800
Above 15 yrs. but not exdg. 20 yrs.    .....16    57    79.8    102    USA    148.2    171    193.8    216.6    228    342    456    684    760
Above 20 yrs. but not exdg. 25 yrs.    .....17    54    75.6    97.2    118.8    140.4    162    183.6    205.2    216    324    432    648    720
Above 25 yrs. but not exdg. 30 yrs.    .....18    51    71.4    91.8    112.2    132.6    153    173.4    193.8    204    306    408    612    680
Above 30 yrs. but not exdg. 35 yrs.    .....17    50    67.2    86.4    105.6    124.8    144    163.2    192.4    192    288    384    576    640
Above 35 yrs. but not exdg. 40 yrs.    .....16    50    63    81    99    117    135    153    171    180    270    380    540    600
Above 40 yrs. but not exdg. 45 yrs.    .....15    50    58.8    75.6    92.4    109.2    126    142.8    159.6    168    252    336    504    560
Above 45 yrs. but not exdg. 50 yrs.    .....13    50    50.4    64.8    79.2    93.6    108    122.4    136.8    144    216    286    432    480
Above 50 yrs. but not exdg. 55 yrs.    .....11    50    50    54    66    78    90    102    114    120    180    240    360    400
Above 55 yrs. but not exdg. 60 yrs.    ..... 8    50    50    50    52.8    62.4    72    81.6    91.2    96    114    192    286    320
Above 60 yrs. but not exdg. 65 yrs.    ..... 5    50    50    50    50   
50    54    61.2    68.4    72    108    144    216    240
Above 65 yrs.    ..... 5    50    50    50    50    50    50    51    57   
60    90    . 120    180    200

Note: he amount of compensation so arrived at in the case of fatal accident claims shall be reduced by 1 /3rd in consideration of the expenses which the victim would have incurred towards maintaining himself had he been alive.
 
2. Amount of compensation shall not be less than Rs. 50,000.     

3. General Damages (in case of death): 
  
The following General Damages shall be payable in addition to compensation outlined above:     

(i) Funeral expenses     -- Rs.    2,000/-

(ii) Loss of Consortium, if beneficiary is the spouse     -- Rs.    5,000/-

(iii) Loss of Estate     -- Rs.    2,500/-

(iv) Medical Expenses--Actual expenses incurred before death supported by bills/vouchers but not exceeding     -- Rs. 15,000/-

4. General Damages in case of Injuries and Disabilities:
   
(i) Pain and Sufferings   
 
(a) Grievous injuries     -- Rs.    5,000/-

(b) Non-grievous injuries     -- Rs.    1,000/-

(ii) Medical Expenses--Actual expenses incurred supported by bills/vouchers but not exceeding as one time payment     -- Rs. 15,000/-

5. Disability in non-fatal accidents:
    
The following compensation shall be payable in case of disability to the victim arising out of non-fatal accidents:
   
Loss of income, if any, for actual period of disablement not exceeding fifty two weeks.
   
PLUS either of the following:-
   
(a) In case of permanent total disablement the amount payable shall be arrived at by multiplying the annual loss of income by the Multiplier applicable to the age on the date of determining the compensation, or  
 
(b)   In case of permanent partial disablement such percentage of compensation which would have been payable in the case of permanent total disablement as specified under item  (a) above.     
Injuries deemed to result in Permanent Total Disablement /Permanent Partial Disablement and percentage of loss of earning capacity shall be as per Schedule I under Workmen's Compensation Act, 1923.
   
6. Notional income for compensation to those who had no income prior to accident: -
 
Fatal and disability in non-fatal accidents: -
  
(a) Non-earning persons     -- Rs. 15,000 p.a.

(b)Spouse -- Rs. l/3rd of income of the earning/surviving spouse.                                                                                                              

In case of other injuries only "general damage" as applicable.]     

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1. The Schedule Substituted by S.O. 475(E), dated 21st june, 1989 (w.e.f. 1-7-1989) and renumbered as the First Schedule by Act 54 of 1994, section 63 (w.e.f. 14-11-1994).

2.Inserted by Act 54 of 1994, sec. 64 (w.e.f. 14-11-1994).

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Last updated on July, 2016

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