Having a coveted registration number for your vehicle is now going to be a very costly affair. The State government has proposed to implement a hefty hike on the prices of special or VIP numbers, with effect from January 1. The most sought after number, 0001, will henceforth be available for Rs 4 lakh, instead of its current price of Rs 1 lakh.
The same number for two and three wheelers and transport vehicles will be available for Rs 50,000 instead of the present Rs 25,000, the notice says. What’s more, the discretionary powers of RTOs are being withdrawn, which means that officers will no longer be able reserve certain numbers for people of their choice and deny the same to others. Any violation is certain to invite stern action, said a senior government official.
Earlier, it was possible to reserve numbers, as the allotment of special numbers with charges was a departmental matter. Now, unless a registration series of a particular class or category of vehicles is exhausted, no new registration series can be started for the same class by the registering authority. To introduce a new series that starts from 0001, a written order by the state transport commissioner has been made mandatory.
This means RTOs will not enjoy sweeping powers while allocating VIP numbers from any series.
The 0001 registration number will be available for Rs 3 lakh in RTO areas excluding Mumbai, Thane, Raigad, Pune, Nashik, Aurangabad, Nagpur and Kolhapur. For numbers such as 0009, 0099, 0786, 0999 and 9999 charges will be Rs 1.5 lakh for four wheelers and Rs 20,000 for two and three wheelers. For numbers such as 0111-0888 and 1111-8888 (with similar four digits), the charges would be Rs 70,000 for four wheelers and Rs 15,000 for two and three wheelers.
All the numbers will be allotted on a first-come-first-serve basis. If there is more than one bidder for a specific number, it will be auctioned as per government rules, the notification says.