Know about Smart Card driving license

A Smart Card Driving License (SCDL) is an upgraded version of a driving license. It is a tamper-proof driving license in the form of a plastic card with an embedded microprocessor chip of 64 kb memory which will have all information about the DL-holder stored in it. Smart cards are considered superior to normal driving licenses as it holds all the information on one single card. All the biometric data of the applicant such as blood group, thumb & fingerprint, retina scan, body markings, etc., are recorded on the smart card DL and are also held by the RTO / RTA office which helps them to track the individual's information.

What are the contents of a Smart Card Driving License form?

The smart card driving license form contains 3 parts as mentioned below:

The visual inspection zone: It contains all the basic details such as the name of the applicant, address, date of birth, vehicle class, vehicle type, and signature.

The machine-readable zone: This section contains details such as the date of the issue of the driving license, the serial number of the chip, issuing authority details, and license validity details.

The central motor vehicles rule: This section contains details such as endorsements, fines, disqualification, and other information. In case of a penalty, it also shows the date on which the driving license owner was fined and the date on which the dues were settled.

Benefits of a Smart Card Driving License

  • The smart card driving license stores all the information such as signature, photographs, biometrics, and personal details of the driving license holder in a safer way.
  • There are no chances of your smart card license getting tampered as your details are readable only when the card is inserted in special handheld devices. The information on the data can only be accessed by traffic police to verify your identity and authenticity of your driving license.
  • The information stored in the card cannot be erased. It can only be modified. This provides for a good source of a permanent audit trail.
  • A smart card driving license prevents the issuance of the fake registration certificate and bogus driving licenses.
  • You will no longer have to worry that your driving license will get torn or mutilated.
  • You get the flexibility to use the card anywhere and anytime, whenever you require.

Eligibility for a Smart Card Driving License

  • The applicant should be at least 18 years old if you want a smart card license to ride a geared motorcycle with an engine capacity of more than 50 ccs.
  • You must have completed 16 years old if you wish to ride a gearless bike with an engine capacity of up to 50 ccs. You must also procure a consent letter from your parents/guardians.
  • The applicant must have at least completed 8th standard and must be at least 18 years old to get a smart card driving license for commercial heavy vehicles and transport vehicles.

Documents required for Smart Card Driving License

Here is a list of the general documents that you will require to get your smart card driving license-

  • Duly filled application form
  • Medical Certificate - Form 1 A and 1 (to be signed by a certified Government doctor)
  • Application Fees
  • Passport size photographs
  • Age Proof such as 10th Class mark sheet, PAN Card, transfer certificate from any school (with the date of birth printed on it), birth certificate, passport.
  • Address Proof such as Aadhaar card, passport, ration card, house agreement, latest utility bills (gas bill, electricity, or telephone bill)
  • In case you reside in another city, you can submit a copy of a recent utility bill along with the rental agreement as a valid address proof. Alternatively, you can also get a letter from your employer stating that you reside in this city.

Application procedure for a Smart Card Driving License

Online Process- 

  • To apply for a Smart Card online, you need to follow these steps-
  • Visit your state transport department’s website and download the smart card driving license application form.
  • After downloading and filling the form, attach all the required documents.
  • Visit your nearest RTO office and submit the form along with the required documents. Also, schedule an appointment for your driving test.
  • You will have to pay the required fees for your application to be processed.
  • You can then take your driving test.
  • After this, if you pass the test, your biometrics will be recorded which includes your fingerprints, photographs, and retina scan, etc.
  • Then, you need to verify all the information recorded and can correct the same in case if you find any errors.
  • If you pass your driving test, then the smart card license will be sent to your registered address.

Offline Process-

To apply for a Smart Card offline, you need to follow these steps-

  • Check if your state has a smart card driving license facility. If you already have a permanent license, then you can get it converted to a smart card one. All you need to do is visit the RTO website, fill the application form, pay the fees, and record your biometric details.
  • After filling all the required details, you need to book a time slot for giving your driving test.
  • Book a time slot for giving your driving test.
  • To give the test, you need to visit the venue at the scheduled date and time.
  • If you pass the test, the smart card will be sent to the registered address via speed post.

What is the fee of a Smart Card Driving License? 

The fees for a Smart Card Driving License is Rs 200. It is advisable to check with your state RTO for the exact charges before issuing one for yourself.

What is the validity period of a Smart Card Driving License?

The smart card is valid for 20 years from the date of issue or until the holder attains the age of 50 years, whichever comes earlier. After the lapse of the validity period, the license holder can renew his/her card by paying the renewal fee to the RTO.