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Importance of PUC Certificate

09 Feb 2019

Car Insurance Article

With the United Nations strongly advocating for climate action and clean energy in their Sustainable Development Goals, most member countries including India have developed frameworks to realise those goals. At a policy level, one such action taken by India is the implementation of rules under the Central Motor Vehicles Act, 1989, wherein the emission levels allowed for each type of vehicle is regulated. Considering that India has almost 300 million vehicles spread across every corner of the country, controlling the level of air pollution is of the utmost importance.

So, how does the government and the conscientious vehicle-owner ensure that the vehicles are not harming the quality of air?

The answer is- through a Pollution Under Control certificate.

This article will highlight the meaning of a PUC certificate, the importance of the certificate, and the process of procuring a valid certificate.

What is a PUC certificate?

Pollution Under Control certificate is a document that is provided to your vehicle, be it a 2-wheeler, 4-wheeler, or an 18-wheeler, that states that your vehicle’s emissions are within permissible limits. The permissible limits are listed under Rule 115(2) of the Central Motor Vehicles Act, 1989. These emission limits are revised according to the recommendations of the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI). This means that the vehicle owner needs to validate their PUC certificate every 6 months, in order to adhere to the latest compliances.

As per the Central Motor Vehicles Act, 1989, every vehicle driver/rider must have a valid PUC certificate with them when they are on Indian roads. No, it cannot be at home, or in your other car, or eaten by your dog! It’s best to keep the PUC certificate IN the car at all times along with your car insurance and car registration papers.

A PUC certificate has the following details listed on it:

  • The vehicle registration number
  • PUC certificate number
  • Date of the emission test
  • Emission test reading
  • PUC test validity date

Now that you know what a PUC certificate is, let’s take a comprehensive look at what makes it such a crucial document for every vehicle owner to have.

PUC certificate importance

You may have a good enough understanding of why you must have a valid PUC certificate for your vehicle(s) at all times. Read on to see if you have missed out on any:

It is required by law: As mentioned earlier, the Indian law requires every vehicle to have a valid PUC certificate. If the authorities find the vehicle running on the road without a valid PUC certificate, the owner-driver will have to pay a hefty fine. Plus, if the owner-driver is found to be guilty of other non-compliances, their driving license can also be revoked. It is wise to just adhere to the laws of the land, and get a PUC certificate.

It leads to better vehicular maintenance: When the owner-driver knows that their vehicle is up for a PUC assessment, they will most likely have their vehicle checked for any faults, and get it serviced. Or, in a scenario where the vehicle is found to be emitting a higher level of pollutants than allowed by law, the owner-driver will be compelled to get it checked out by a professional automobile servicing centre. Here, the automobile can be assessed not just for its high emission levels but other possible problems, too.

Ensures reduced carbon footprint:Ensuring that all the vehicles in India are operating within acceptable emission norms, leads to a significant decrease in the country’s collective carbon footprint. The mandate ensures that we don’t see cars billowing black smoke, or the children of the country coughing due to inhalation of toxic gases emitted from polluting vehicles.

Submission of PUC certificate to renew car insurance is mandatory: The importance of a PUC certificate in car insurance cannot be stated enough. According to the IRDAI, a car insurance policy can be bought or obtained only if the said vehicle has a valid PUC certificate. So, if you are looking to continue the insurance on your vehicle, you first need to check that it has a valid PUC certificate.

Knowing the importance of having a valid PUC certificate may lead to the next question- “how do I renew my PUC certificate?”, or “how do I find out when my car’s PUC certificate expires?” Keep reading to find the answers to these questions.

How to renew your vehicle’s PUC certificate

When you buy a new car, your car comes with a sticker that says ‘non-polluting car’. This indicates that the car has been tested for its emissions level during its manufacturing process and deemed to be within the emission limits. This sticker is valid for 12 months from the date you register your car.

Now, you may wonder what happens at the end of those 12 months. Do you have to send the car to the manufacturer again to get a reassessment of the emission levels? Thankfully, you don’t have to engage in such a tedious process.

When your vehicle’s PUC certificate is nearing the end of its validity, you can head to one of the following three places to get your vehicle assessed:

  • Petrol pump or fuel station with an emission testing centre
  • Regional Transport Office
  • Standalone authorised PUC centres

The authorised person at the PUC centre will check the emission levels of your vehicle, and provide you with a valid certificate for a small fee.

If you are unsure of where your PUC certificate is, and can’t determine when it expires, you can easily find out that information online. Follow these simple steps, and you will know when to schedule your next visit to the PUC centre:

  • Head to
  • Click on the section titled ‘PUC Certificate’.
  • Enter your vehicle’s registration number, and the last 5 characters of your vehicle’s chassis number.
  • Prove you are not a robot by entering the CAPTCHA code.
  • Ta-da! You will be able to see the status of the vehicle’s PUC certificate, its expiration date, and emission level readings.

Unfortunately, one cannot apply for a PUC certificate online due to the nature of the task. You will have to physically take your vehicle to the PUC centre for an assessment.

Thankfully, you can at least buy or renew your vehicle’s insurance online. So, what are you waiting for? Get your PUC certificate soon and buy insurance for the vehicle!

Disclaimer: For more details on risk factors, terms & conditions please read sales brochure carefully before concluding a sale. *The discount amount will vary subject to vehicle specification and place of registration

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