India Driving Licence or Driver Permit

India Driving Licence : Driving licences in India are issued by the Regional Transport Offices (RTOs) of each state. Here is an overview:

Types of Licences

  • Indian Driving Licence – For Indian citizens and residents to drive in India.
  • International Driving Permit – For foreign nationals visiting India to drive with their native licence.

Minimum Driving Age

Licence CategoryMinimum Age
Motorcycle16 years
Light Motor Vehicle18 years
Commercial Vehicle20 years

Licence Categories

  • Two-wheeler
  • Light Motor Vehicle (LMV) – cars, taxis
  • Heavy Motor Vehicle (HMV) – trucks, buses
  • Commercial licences – tractor, forklift, etc.

Licence Validity

  • Non-transport licences are valid for 20 years.
  • Commercial transport licences are valid for 3 years.

Obtaining a New Indian Driving Licence

To obtain your first Indian driving licence:


You must:

  • Meet the minimum age requirement
  • Pass the licence exams
  • Submit documents and application

Required Documents

  • Age proof
  • Address proof
  • Medical certificate
  • Passport photos


  1. Apply for learner’s licence at RTO and take test.
  2. Enroll in recognized driving school for training.
  3. Take driving test at RTO after 30 days.
  4. If passed, permanent licence will be issued.

Renewing an Indian Driving Licence

Indian driving licences must be renewed before expiration:

Renewal Period

  • Non-transport licences must be renewed after 20 years.
  • Transport licences must be renewed after 3 years.

Renewal Process

  • Submit renewal application at RTO 30 days before expiry.
  • Provide medical certificate.
  • Pay renewal fees.
  • Updated licence will be issued.

Expired Licences

  • It is illegal to drive in India with an expired licence.
  • Licences expired over 5 years require retaking all exams.

Replacing a Lost/Stolen Indian Licence

If your Indian driving licence is lost or stolen:


  • File a police complaint about the missing licence immediately.


  • Apply for duplicate licence at RTO with:
    • Police complaint copy
    • Affidavit stating details
    • ID and address proof
    • Fees

Duplicate Licence

  • You will be issued a duplicate licence with the same information.
  • This will act as your new valid driving licence.

Changing Your Address on an Indian Licence

If you change your residence in India, update your driving licence:


  • Inform the RTO of your address change within 14 days.


  • Submit at RTO:
    • Application for address change
    • Proof of new address
    • Current driving licence
    • Applicable fees

Updated Licence

  • You will receive a reprinted licence with your new address.
  • Driving with an outdated address can result in fines.

Taking the Driving Exam for an Indian Licence

To obtain an Indian driving licence, you must pass a driving exam:

Learner’s Licence Exam

  • Computerized multiple choice questions on road signs and rules.
  • Passing score is 80% – valid for 6 months.

Driving Test

  • Assess driving skills on test route set by RTO.
  • Includes parking, 3-point turn, slope test.
  • Automatic failure for dangerous errors.
  • Passing results in issuance of permanent licence.

Traffic Fines and Penalties in India

Driving violations can result in fines, imprisonment, and licence suspension:

Common Offences and Fines

  • Speeding – Rs. 400 to Rs.2000
  • Signal Jumping – Rs. 300
  • Driving Without Licence – Rs. 5000
  • Dangerous Driving – Rs. 1000 to Rs.5000

Serious Offences

  • Drunk Driving – Rs. 10,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment
  • Reckless Driving – Rs. 5000 and/or 2 years licence suspension
  • Vehicular Manslaughter – Rs. 10,000 and/or 2 years imprisonment

FAQs on India Driving Licence

1. How do I convert my foreign licence to an Indian licence?

You need to take the driving exams and apply for an Indian licence from scratch. Licences are not transferred.

2. What vehicles can you drive with an LMV licence?

The Indian LMV licence covers motor cars, taxis, three-wheelers, and two-wheelers.

3. Is an International Driving Permit valid in India?

Yes, foreign nationals can legally drive in India using an IDP along with their native licence.

4. Can I drive in other states with my licence?

Yes, an Indian driving licence is valid across all states and union territories.

5. How soon can I take the driving test after learner’s licence?

You must wait at least 30 days after getting your learner’s licence before taking the RTO driving test.


In summary, knowing the licence application, renewal, and exam procedures in India is crucial for obtaining your legal driving privileges. Following RTO rules will ensure you can drive on Indian roads safely and responsibly.