Revamped vehicle number plates soon

KATHMANDU: The Department of Transport Management (DoTM) is planning

standardize the system of vehicle number plates to reduce tax evasion and crime.

The department has completed a preliminary study in the regard. Budget 2009-10 has allocated Rs 30 million for the implementation of new system of number plates.

DoTM is taking this step to reduce vehicle-related crimes, said Sharad Chandra Poudel, director general. “The new system will be difficult to duplicate. We are studying security measures for the number plate system,” he said. The study commissioned by the DoTM has suggested three number plates — in front, at the rear and on the body — for all vehicles.

The front and rear number plates should be kept fixed as usual while the third number plate should be changed every year. “Vehicle owners will get the third number plate after paying road and vehicle tax at the end of each fiscal year,” Poudel said. The third number plate will be a sticker and a proof of revenue payment, he added.

According to DoTM, more than half of the private vehicles — two wheelers and four wheelers — plying on the roads are not paying road and ownership taxes.

Around 8,97,629 vehicles have registered in Nepal till May 14

this year. “It is more than Rs 2 billion that we still have to collect from vehicles till the fiscal year 2008-09,” said Poudel.

DoTM is also mulling reducing the vehicle number plate categories to two. “We are thinking of dividing number plates into heavy and

light categories,” said Poudel, “Frankly, we don’t need more

than two categories.” Currently, eight categories of number plates are being used for ministers,

civil servant, corporations, public transport, private-owned, diplomatic mission and others.

Poudel said the new number plate would not be costly.

According to an estimate, the

new number plate will cost from

Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,200.

The department is also considering to engraving the national flag along with vehicle number on number plates. As per the DoTM plan, the new number plate system will be enforced from the next Nepali New Year — mid-April 2010.

Vehicles registered till May 14

Truck/Bus 85,243

Car/Jeep 1,04,863

Pick-up 4,217

Micro-bus 2,492

Tempo 7,300

Motorcycle 6,29,496

Tractor 45,565

Heavy Vehicle 890