Court lists hearing of re-registration of non-JK vehicles on 19 April

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Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir High Court Thursday adjourned the case of re-registration of non-JK vehicles and listed it for the hearing on 19 April.

The Jammu and Kashmir High Court had sought the response of the Government by 15 April over the matter after the case was heard on 7 April.

The circular was challenged in the Jammu and Kashmir High Court by Petitioner Advocate Zahoor Bhat through his council questioning the legal sanctity of the circular issued by RTO Kashmir.

While hearing the matter earlier on 7 April the single bench court of Justice Ali Mohammed Magray had asked, if RTO is the authority to seek the re-registration of non-JK registered vehicles and had sought the response of the Government on the matter by or before 15 April so that the controversy is set at rest.

In support of his submissions, the senior counsel Faisal Qadri had also referred to and relied upon the judgment of the High Court of Karnataka delivered in case title Jagdev Biradar vs State of Karnataka.

During the proceedings on the matter on 07 April 2022 Senior Council Faisal Qadri for the petitioner Advocate Zahoor Bhat, invited the attention of the Court to section 46, 47 and 50 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, to indicate that the scheme of law provides that when a motor vehicle registered in one State has been kept in another State, for a period exceeding twelve months, the owner of the vehicle shall, within such period and in such form containing such particulars as may be prescribed by the Central Government, apply to the Registering Authority, within whose jurisdiction the vehicle then is, for the assignment of a new registration mark.

While hearing the matter on 7th April by a Single Bench Court headed by Justice Ali Mohammad Magray, the Court had observed,  “Prima facie there appears to be a consensus over the fact that while adhering to the provisions of law, the Competent Authority can seek such response from the owners whose vehicle remains in the State other than the one from where the vehicle is purchased for a period exceeding 12 months, but the question is raised as to who that Competent Authority is?”

“Feeling it appropriate”, the court asked that to file their response so that the controversy is set at rest by or before April 15.

“The appearance of the Advocate General in the matter is expected to take care of the apprehension that the senior counsel for the petitioner has projected vis-à-vis seizure of the vehicles at the hands of the Police under the garb of the impugned circular,” the 7th April Court order reads.

Regional Transport Officer (RTO) Kashmir had ordered the people in the valley to re-register their vehicles bought from outside Jammu & Kashmir with Nine per cent as fresh Tax amount for the remaining life of the vehicle within fifteen days, failing which the enforcing agencies will act.

The government has filed the response directed earlier by the Court on 7 April 2021.

Meanwhile, legal experts and taxation experts had also questioned the legal sanctity of the circular issued by the RTO Kashmir.

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