Embossed number plates likely this FY

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Feb 3, 2017-

The long-planned embossed vehicle number plate project is likely to be implemented this fiscal year as preparations have been going on smoothly, the Department of Transport Management (DoTM) said.

The department said it would start a pilot phase in the Kathmandu Valley by this fiscal year which ends in mid-July. “The process of procuring equipment and materials is underway,” said Chandra Man Shrestha, director general of the DoTM. 

According to Shrestha, they will start with government vehicles. “The embossed number plate system will be gradually applied to two-wheelers and then to four-wheelers.”

These machine-made number plates will replace the traditional hand-painted plates which have been used since automobiles first appeared in the country more than a hundred years ago. The new plates will help the government to maintain uniformity in the issuance of vehicle numbers.

The cost of the new plates to vehicle owners will be decided later based on the features to be included and the implementation modality, according to the DoTM.  

Embossed number plates will also help to keep digital records of vehicles, discourage tax evasion and control auto theft. Offending motorists will also be prevented from changing number plates after being involved in traffic accidents or criminal acts. 

The plan to go for embossed number plates had been included in the Three-Year Interim Plan 2007-10, but it did not happen for a number of reasons like delays in conducting a proper study, confusion regarding the modality to be used and intervention by the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) following a report regarding irregularities in 2010. 

The project was in limbo for almost a decade before a private firm was contracted to import the necessary equipment.  

“The government placed an order for the necessary equipment at the end of 2016. Things are moving as per our expectation, and the logistics will be completed by mid-April,” said an official of the company which has won the supply contract.

The machines to produce embossed number plates are being imported from Poland. 

Published: 03-02-2017 09:52

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