Pollution Under Control (PUC) Certificate

The Indian government has mandated the Pollution Under Control (PUC) certificate under the Central Motor Vehicles Rule, 1989. The PUC test assesses the emission of a vehicle and checks if it follows the standard pollution regulation.
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In India, a valid driving license, insurance coverage and a Pollution Under Control Certificate are legal mandatory requirements for a car. An insurance coverage is mandated by the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, for all cars plying on Indian roads. Similarly, the Central Motor Vehicle Rule, 1989 mandates the PUC Certification.

pollution under control certificate

What is PUC Certificate?

The smoke emitted from vehicles, if left unchecked, could pollute the environment to a great extent. PUC is a certification mark that is provided to vehicles that undergo the PUC Test successfully. The certification indicates that the vehicle’s emissions are in alignment with standard pollution norms and are not harmful to the environment. All vehicles on Indian roads are mandated to carry a valid PUC certification.

Validity and Cost:

  • When you purchase a new car, a PUC certificate is provided for it and the validity of this certificate is 1 year. Following that your car would need to undergo the PUC test at regular intervals and a new certificate will be issued each time.
  • The validity of the new certificate is usually 6 months. In case an adverse reading is observed in the PUC test, the validity of the certificate will be decided on the basis of that reading.
  • If cars exhibit higher levels of emission than the prescribed limits, the registration number of the vehicle will be informed to the RTO, Deputy RTO or Assistant RTO by the testing centre within one day.
  • The cost of the PUC test is quite minimal. It varies from Rs. 60 to Rs. 100, based on the vehicle that is being tested and its fuel type.

PUC Test Procedure:

In the case of diesel vehicles, the accelerator is fully pressed and the readings of pollution levels are observed. This is repeated five times and the average constitutes the final reading.

For petrol vehicles, the car is kept idling without pressing the accelerator. Only one reading is taken and this constitutes the final reading.

Test Criteria and Certificate:

All vehicles that are tested for PUC should fall within the following limits.

Vehicle Type Percentage of CO Hydrocarbon measured in ppm
2 and 3 wheeled vehicles (2 or 4 stroke) that are manufactured on or before 31st March 2000 4.5 9000
2 and 3 wheeled vehicles (2 stroke) that are manufactured after 31st March 2000 3.5 6000
2 and 3 wheeled vehicles (4 stroke) that are manufactured after 31st March 2000 3.5 4500
4 wheeled vehicles that are manufactured as per the Pre Bharat Stage II Norms 3 1500
4 wheeled vehicles that are manufactured as per the Pre Bharat Stage II, Stage III or subsequent Norms 0.5 750

PUC testing can be done at any authorised petrol pumps or independent testing centres. The certificates are also issued at the location of the tests.

Importance of PUC Certificate:

The PUC certificate contains the following information,

  • The serial number of the issued certificate
  • The vehicle’s license plate number
  • The date on which the test was conducted
  • The expiry date of the PUC certificate
  • The readings and observations from the test

PUC certificate is an important document that you should carry at all times when you are driving the tested vehicle. When requested by a traffic official, if you are unable to furnish this document, you will have to bear the penalties. You should also ensure that it is renewed as soon as it expires to avoid fines.

If a vehicle does not carry a valid PUC certificate, it is liable for prosecution as per Section 190(2) of the Motor Vehicles Act. The driver will be charged Rs. 1000 if it is a first-time offense, and Rs. 2000 for every subsequent offense.

In case you are carrying a valid PUC certificate, but your vehicle is visibly polluting the environment, the certificate of your vehicle will be cancelled and you will be required to procure a new certificate within 1 week. If you fail to do so, you will be prosecuted under Section 190(2) of the Motor Vehicles Act.

PUC Certification and Car Insurance Renewal:

Towards the end of 2017, the Supreme Court gave a nod to the recommendations raised by the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) that focussed on battling air pollution in the country. The Supreme Court Bench with Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice Madan B Lokur stated that it would be necessary to link the PUC Certificate with the car insurance policy of an individual for insurance renewal to be successful. The bench clearly specified that vehicles which do not conform to these rules will not be allowed to extend insurance coverage through renewal.

This was a landmark ruling by the Supreme Court, as there have been reports of poor compliance with the PUC certification programme on a national level. It was observed that only 23% of the vehicles in Delhi attended PUC tests.

Some of the highlights of the Supreme Court directive are as follows:

  1. PUC centres allowed in every fuel station - Although there have been recommendations to reduce the number of PUC centres in Delhi and NCR on grounds of difficulty in supervision of these establishments, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) disagreed to this. MoRTH mentioned to the court that it would be ideal to have PUC centres in every fuel station. The court has agreed to this proposal with a rider, stating that each station should then be empanelled and listed on the MoRTH website. The court has further stated that the government should audit these stations regularly for compliance.
  2. Automatic online network to be set up for linking PUC data centres - The Supreme Court has accepted the recommendation to link PUC data centres automatically and mandate the prepayment of fees for PUC tests. There will also be a strict licensing system that includes the audit of PUC centres. These reforms will make sure that all the relevant tests are done and results are recorded.
  3. Recommendations on PUC norms improvement for pre-BSIV vehicles - There have been recommendations on making the PUC norms more stringent for pre-BSIV vehicles, implementation of driving emission testing for these vehicles, and integration of diagnostic systems. These recommendations have been contested by the Road Transport ministry and will be heard at a later date.

All in all, the Supreme Court directives will help in improving the compliance towards the PUC testing system. This is regarded as the first step towards fighting air pollution across the nation, and is not limited to the capital.

Pollution Under Control FAQs:

  1. Which vehicles require PUC Certification?
  2. All motor vehicles plying on Indian roads are required to have a valid PUC Certificate.

  3. Will I have to take a new PUC Certificate when I travel to a different state in India?
  4. No, the PUC Certificate is valid across the entire country.

  5. Who has the authority to conduct a Pollution Under Control test?
  6. The person conducting the PUC test should have a minimum qualification of a degree in motor mechanics or automobile engineering issued by a recognised body. The individual should also know the procedures involved in making minor repairs/adjustments on the vehicle that would bring down the pollution levels. These changes should also not bring about any negative impact on the engine performance.

  7. What are the requirements for undergoing a pollution check?
  8. You will have to take your car to the pollution testing centre and appear in person for the same. There is no other requirement for the pollution check.

  9. When should a car be tested for pollution?
  10. You should conduct the PUC test when you buy a new vehicle. A PUC Certificate is always provided with the new car. This certificate will have a validity of 1 year. Following that you will have to get the vehicle certified again on a periodic basis.

Brand New Articles on Car Insurance

Does Car Insurance Premium Increase After A Claim?

Car insurance is a protective mechanism that offers you a safety net to tide through unprecedented events, such as accidents, auto theft, natural disasters, etc. However, it is often heard that raising a claim under your car insurance can cause a premium hike at renewal. It is important to separate the fact from fiction and understand whether filing claims can actually increase renewal premium.

Overall, it is understood that you should refrain from raising claims under car insurance if the incurred loss is small. This will help preserve the No Claim Bonus, and insurers will not consider you to be in the high-risk category.

This page clarifies how the premiums can rise after a claim and what you should do to ensure that you get a good deal on your car insurance.

What Is Physical Damage Cover In Car Insurance?

The Indian law mandates that all vehicles plying on the roads are protected by at least a minimum of third-party liability insurance. But it is highly recommended that you buy a comprehensive car insurance policy to get maximum protection for your car.

The physical damage cover offered by car insurance companies is of two types:

  • Comprehensive cover
  • Collision cover

This page elaborates on the protection offered by physical damage cover, and should be read by all car owners.

What Is Liability-Only Insurance Cover?

In India, all vehicles on the roads should be insured with a minimum insurance cover, referred to as the third-party liability cover. This is mandated by law. The third-party liability cover offers protection from legal liability to injuries/death of a third party in an accident. It also offers protection to the property of a third party in an accident. It does not protect the car owner or the insured car itself from accidents, thefts, natural calamities, etc.

The third-party liability cover is also referred to as a liability-only plan or act-only policy. This page elaborates on the third-party liability insurance cover and the general exclusions under it.

What Are The Factors That Determine Your Car Insurance Premium?

According to the Motor Vehicles Act, all car owners should equip their vehicles with a minimum of third-party liability insurance. This is the cheapest form of car insurance and also the simplest.

The comprehensive auto insurance policy has extensive coverage when compared to the liability-only plan. However, it is also more expensive. Apart from the extent of coverage, there are several other factors that influence the premium of your car insurance. This page takes a look at these factors in detail.

Case Study - Delay In Raising Car Insurance Claim

If your insured car meets with an accident, it is imperative that you raise a claim as quickly as possible. If your claim is delayed, the insurance company may refuse to honour the claim. So, be aware of the timelines within which you should report an accident or theft. This information will be provided in your car insurance policy document. Read through the document carefully so that you are aware of the nuances in the fine print.

This page explains the need to raise a car insurance claim quickly through a case study.

GST Update: GST of 18% is applicable on car insurance effective from the 1st of July, 2017

News about pollution under control certificate

  • Andhra Pradesh Police Department Inducts the Mahindra TUV300 into its Fleet  

    The Mahindra TUV300 has found a new spot in the Andhra Pradesh police department. The SUVs will be used by the police department in the state primarily for patrolling duty. The TUV300 has been customized with decals of the Andhra Pradesh police department.

    Mahindra and Mahindra have supplied the Andhra Pradesh police department with the 100 PS version of the TUV300, which uses a 1.5 litre, 3-cylinder diesel engine. Additionally, the car comes with a 5-speed manual gearbox. The car makers also have an automatic transmission option for the TUV300 for private buyers.

    Mahindra’s Bolero has long since been a part of the police fleet for multiple states and it comes as no surprise that the TUV300 has also followed suit since they have a similar exterior. Chief Minister N.Chandrababu Naidu flagged off the newest addition to the police fleet at the IGM stadium in Vijayawada.

    7 January 2019

  • Bookings Open for the Mahindra XUV300

    There has been a lot of buzz around the Mahindra XUV300 due to its design and class-landing features. This compact SUV is expected to be made available to customers at the start of February next year. Some dealers have already started accepting bookings. Dealers and Gujarat and Pune were approached by the press in recent days, and revealed that they are accepting bookings for the Mahindra XUV300, albeit unofficially, for Rs.11,000. This amount is refundable, and deliveries will likely start by the mid of February next year. The vehicle is expected to feature a 1.5-litre 123 hp diesel engine and a 1.2-lite turbo petrol engine. The price of the SUV is set at around Rs.7.5 lakh but the top-spec W8 variant could cost up to as much as Rs.12 lakh.

    4 January 2019

  • Mahindra XUV300 spotted ahead of launch, more details about the car revealed

    The upcoming sub-4m SUV has been spotted undisguised for the first time since the vehicle was announced. This is most likely for the TV commercial of the car. Not many details were revealed by the company when they announced the name of the vehicle recently. The XUV300 that was recently spotted was finished in the Aqua Marine colour of Mahindra, a colour which was launched by the company with the Marazzo in the first half of 2018. The car was spotted with a W8 badge which most likely means the variants will include W8, W6, W4, and W2, something which is very characteristic of Mahindra. The company has already announced that the car will be available in both petrol and diesel variants. This means there must be 4 variants for both petrol and diesel covered engines. From the new pictures, new details about the car have been revealed. The rear seat in the car will be getting three adjustable headrests, something that is not by most of the car manufacturers in the country. Mahindra has claimed that the XUV300 will house the largest wheelbase of any sub-4m vehicle ever. This could also become one of the most spacious SUV in the class and price range. It is expected that the XUV300 will launch in the country sometime during the first week February in 2019.

    31 December 2018

  • Spied: New Mahindra Thar

    The next-generation Mahindra Thar was is expected to debut at the Auto Expo 2020 and was recently spied on the roads around Chennai. The new Thar is expected to have the BSVI compliant engine as well as safety features such as airbags and ABS. The interiors will be more plush and welcoming with an upgrade in materials. The original external design appears to be unchanged. It may have a modular ladder frame chassis. The diesel engine is likely to be the mHawk 2.2 litre one with a four-wheel drive.

    24 December 2018

  • Cisco, MG to start connected cars India, IOT to make driving easier

    MG Motors India has decided that they will experiment in the Indian market through a collaboration with IOT expert UNLIMIT and Cisco with a new technology for connected cars designed specifically for the Indian market. MG Motors India, which is set to launch an all-new SUV in India to compete with the likes of the Mahindra Alturas, Honda CR-V and the Toyota Fortuner is planning to make a big gamble in the connected mobility field. MG Motors at the time of announcing their collaboration released a detailed report that talked about the connected cars and the number of growing possibilities in India. According to a report published by management consulting firm Arthur D. Little, it is estimated that the connected mobility could reach a market of up to 3 billion USD by the years 2020 in the country. Although the current percentage of connected cars in India is very low, MG Motors believe the demand for connected car service in the country will increase exponentially in the country similar to other global trends. The connected mobility market is expected to grow to 175 billion USD by the year 2020. The Managing Director of MG Motor India believes that the automotive industry in the country is currently under metamorphosis similar to most of the forms of technology. The first SUV of MG Motors is expected to be launched in the coming months followed by the launch of an all-electric SUV. It is expected that MG Motors will be among the first connected vehicles in India. It is yet to be seen how much connectivity they will be offering.

    18 December 2018

  • Mahindra Launches Alturas G4 in India

    Mahindra launched its premier SUV, Alturas G4, in the Indian market and the starting price of the car has been set at Rs.26.95 lakh. The car will be available in 2 variants: Alturas G4 2WD and Alturas G4 4WD. The new SUV is one of the carmaker’s most expensive offering yet. The Alturas G4 will compete with the likes of the Skoda Kodiaq, Ford Endeavour, and Toyota Fortuner.

    The SUV comes with a host of new and exciting features that include ventilated seats with Nappa leather, easy access mode, and a touchscreen infotainment system that is equipped with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

    Under the hood, the car is powered by a 2.2-litre diesel engine with 7-speed automatic transmission. The car is compliant with the BS-VI emission norms and does not have a petrol or manual transmission variant.

    The carmakers have already begun deliveries of the Alturas G4, which is available only in the ‘World of SUVs’ dealerships. Customers who purchase the Alturas G4 will have access to a relationship manager to address any of their needs and requirements.

    17 December 2018

  • BMW discontinues the M3, new next generation car to launch in 2020

    BMW has now stopped sale of the F80 M3 performance sedan in India. BMW, one of the biggest luxury car manufacturer said that the reason for discontinuing the vehicle was that it did not manage to meet the European emission standards. In order to align its emissions with the all new Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP), the car would have needed a new particulate filter. The purpose of this filter is that it reduces the amount of nitrogen oxide produced down to the permissible level of Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure. This filter just controls the emission levels of the vehicle and does not impact the performance of the vehicle in any way. The car manufacturer is currently manufacturing 4 models of the M-Series cars in the country. This list includes the performance sedan M5, the X5 M SUV, the coupe M4 and the new addition to the product line, the M2 Competition. It is expected that the BMW M3 will be making its much anticipated debut in the year 2020. The M2 Competition is one of the most smallest and affordable cars launched under the BMW brand. The car is currently priced in India at Rs.79.90 lakh. All the other vehicles of the M division, the M5, M4, and X5 M are priced at Rs.1.44 crore, Rs.1.33 crore, and Rs.1.77 crore respectively. The F80 M3 was priced at Rs.1.48 crore and was a very strong competitor to the Mercedes AMG C63. The M3 will be replacing its predecessor and will most likely be coming back with a new engine that can produce up to 462 HP. This will be 21 HP more than the current M3 model.

    14 December 2018

  • PSA Group Announces Plans to Re-Enter the Indian Market

    The PSA Group which exited the Indian market in 1997 has announced its plans to re-enter the Indian car market sometime in 2020. The car manufacturers plan to introduce the Citroen SUV and have already planned the manufacture of the gearboxes for next year.

    PSA plans to build up the image of their brand before the begin introducing their vehicles in the market. The company also plans on opening a plant in Chennai for assembly of the vehicles. The carmakers have partnered with the Birla group for this venture.

    The first SUV launched by PSA will compete with the Jeep Compass, the soon to be launched Skoda Karoq, and the Hyundai Tucson.

    13 December 2018

  • Kia Motors India to launch compact SUV in 2019

    Kia Motors India, an automaker from South Korea owned by Hyundai, will launch an SP-concept based compact SUV in 2019. It will launch other cars in multiple categories in the coming years. Its plans include a multi-purpose vehicle (MPV), c-segment sedans, premium hatchbacks, and a sub-4 metre compact SUV. The Kia Carnival’s launch will be in 2020. The Grand Carnival will be priced at around Rs.20 lakh for the base variant and at around Rs.24 lakh for the top-end variant. There are two powertrain options which are the petrol 3.3-litre MPI V6 engine and the 2.2-litre diesel 4-cylinder unit. The petrol engine comes with 318 Nm of torque and 270 BHP. The diesel engine comes with 441 Nm and 200 BHP. A 6-speed automatic gearbox is standard with both variants. Only the diesel variant is expected to be launched in India, which may differ from the international configurations with regard to torque and power.

    12 December 2018

  • First images of exteriors of Tata Harrier released

    The Tata Harrier’s production version’s first images have been released and will go on sale by January 2019. The Harrier’s look is closely aligned to the H5X concept that was unveiled at the Auto Expo 2018.

    The Harrier is designed according to the Impact Design 2.0 philosophy of Tata’s, the first of its cars to do so. The grille and headlights have a special 3D styling element called the ‘humanity line’. The fog lamp and light enclosures also have a distinctive ‘tri-arrow’ design pattern. A scuff plate and chunky cladding in the front are other design quirks of the Harrier. The wheel arches are exaggerated to give the appearance of visual mass. The Harrier comes with a diesel engine that is 2.0 litres. It comes with the option of an automatic or 6-speed manual gearbox. The on-road price will likely be between Rs.16 and Rs.21 lakh.

    6 December 2018

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