New Delhi: The fate of High Security Registration Plates (HSRP) for motor vehicles seems to hang in balance. Going by the Supreme Court’s order, to authorise a single agency with the responsibility of manufacturing special number plates that cannot be counterfeited and duplicated, has created road blocks for the Ministry of Road Transport and National Highway. 

Therefore, Ministry of Road Transport and National Highway has sought advice from Ministry of Law.

The Apex Court directed the state governments to introduce HSRP by December 21. However, the ruling dispensations in the states submitted an affidavit demanding to extend the time limit.

Considering the plea, the SC extended the time limit to February 29 for Uttar Pradesh; March 31 for Bihar, Chandigarh, Jammu and Kashmir and April 30 for Jharkhand, Punjab, Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand and Gujarat. Meanwhile, the time limit for Himachal Pradesh was also extended till June 15.

The Supreme Court will once again hear the case on January 20.

In order to curtail the terrorist activities and stealing of motor vehicles, the Apex Court directed states to implement HSPR schemes. Ironically, the single vendor clause has become a bottleneck for state governments. Up till now no agency is willing to take this large contract.

According to the sources, the Delhi government has initiated its move to implement HSPR. It has assigned the contract to Delhi Integrated Multi-Modal Transit System (DIMTS). Surprisingly, it has not yet taken any decision on single vendor. Sources say, it is likely that by next week a conclusion will be drawn. Thereafter, the project will commence in the national capital.

Despite SC orders, several states have not yet taken any steps in this direction. Owing to the Assembly elections in UP, Punjab and Uttarakhand, the scheme might be on the backburner, whereas in Jharkhand the scheme is still gathering dust.