For more than a year I’d been repeatedly checking the expiry dates on Kishore‘s and my driver’s licence and worrying about the pain we’d have to endure for their renewal. The dates were only a few weeks apart so–like many things in our married life–we considered ourselves somewhat fortunate on having to work on this project together instead of suffering alone.
From a post on Gurgaon.com a year ago, I’d learnt about someone’s experience of getting a licence from Mini Secretariat. Besides, the Gurgaon Police website gave some details but not enough to give full confidence over the process involved. About 5 weeks before the first expiry date, I decided to go over to Mini Secretariat to get hold of the required forms and figure out the process of renewal. Based on my experience of renewing the licence after that, here’s an FAQ for those who may be wondering and worrying about the steps involved in renewing driving licences in Gurgaon.
Where is the driving licence renewed in Gurgaon?
In Mini Secretariat. This building can be accessed from two roads going left after taking the right turn from Rajiv Chowk on NH8. The first left turn takes one on the road with the right entrance to the building.
How are the renewal forms obtained?
The forms are available from the first counter in the first big hall appearing on the left side after entering the building. A cardboard folder containing 3 forms is handed by an officer on payment of Rs10. This office is open for form collection or submission from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm Monday through Friday.
How much in advance should one apply for one’s licence renewal?
One can apply anytime in the month preceding the expiry date. But a grace period of one month after the expiry date is accepted by the Licence Authority. Post that period, one has to explain in one of the forms the reason for delay in submitting the application. Remember that the old licence has to be handed over while requesting renewal so till a new licence is obtained, one can use the acknowledgement slip issued by the authorities as a proof of licence.
How are the forms filled and submitted?
The forms are easy to fill. They require one’s address, personal data, one passport sized photograph and 2 sets of address and photo id papers that should be self-attested.
One can go to the Licence office with filled forms at 9:30 am >>get the medical check-up done in another room >> pay its fee of Rs100 in cash >> get into a queue back in the main hall to pay the licence renewal fee of Rs220 >> followed by another queue to get clicked by a web cam and then >> go back to the earlier queue to handover the folder with forms and payment slips to take an acknowledgement slip mentioning the date for collecting one’s licence.
Anything more to the process of renewal?
The process of renewal for Gurgaon licence holders is simple. A medical check up followed by switching 2 queues repeatedly as mentioned above and collecting an acknowledgement slip, entitles one to the renewed licence after a period of 10 days. This licence can be collected on the designated date by anyone showing the acknowledgement slip.
How involved is the medical check-up?
A medical officer sits in Hall 2 for which directions are given on the walls out of the main hall. The day we visited at 10 am, there were just 4-5 people outside the medical officer’s room. People are first asked to pay Rs100 in cash to a cashier sitting there, obtain its receipt and join the queue to see the medical officer. The officer is extremely informal with his questions. All he appeared to be asking male candidates was to read one or two numbers to rule out colour-blindness. With women, he appeared to be even more polite and just handed them their folder with his signed report after a passing glance at the candidate.
Are those with outstation driving licences treated the same way as those with Gurgaon licences?
No, those with Delhi or other city licences don’t have it so easy. We learnt that only on visiting the Licence office and after paying fees for medical and licence renewal. Kishore’s licence was from Delhi and as his turn came to get clicked for the new licence, he was told to get an NOC (or No Objection Certificate) from the Issuing authority in Delhi to consider the application request complete.
We quickly drove over to the licence authority of his old licence in Janakpuri in Delhi, shuttled between 3 windows over 2 hours and managed to collect the all important NOC to submit it back at Mini Secretariat.
What is the process for getting an NOC for non-Gurgaon licence renewals?
In our case, the Delhi licence authority was in the DDA building in Janakpuri and for us, its location meant some hunting. We learnt from one of the agents outside this office that the action zone was Window No.14 on the groundfloor of the building. Then on, we surrendered the use of our legs over 2 hours to the 2 windows of 14 and 17 and did as told. At the end, it was no mean achievement to be owners of an NOC after paying a small fee of Rs50 and lots of good natured smiles but no cash bribes.
At this place, we had to give an application requesting an NOC with copies of our address proof and the old licence. It helped to be carrying blank sheets of paper and extra photocopies of documents. But there were at least 2 enterprising photocopier owners in the menagerie of people who were doing brisk business there.
Since it was already past 1 pm for us, we decided to handover the prized NOC to the Gurgaon licence office only the next day.
Are the licences handed over on the day of application submission?
No. They are given 10 days later.
What is involved in picking up of licences?
The confirmation or acknowledgement slip obtained on submission of the docket of papers in Mini Secretariat, carries a date for collection of the printed licence. On the designated day, all it takes for one is to handover the slip at one of the 2 counters in the main hall and acquire a glossy strip of paper as one’s driving licence.
Once you have this insignificant looking strip of paper with your sad looking picture but, very importantly, the correct address on it, simply take it to a laminating place where it would be folded and laminated in a neat rectangle. The driving licence then on assumes some significance and the right size to slip into a wallet. Run off some photocopies to use them as your address proof and thank Gurgaon authorities for making the process at least somewhat streamlined and devoid of touts.
Of course, it’d be wonderful to be able to submit forms online, pay fees online, go over for a medical check up–if necessary–and see the licences couriered home. We live in the hope of a more organised administrative structure and transparency in the country’s bureaucracy but for now it helps to know that half a day’s leave can get Gurgaonites their renewed driving licences.
Update on 21 May 2012:
A recent comment from Avinash shares these details:
. he paid Rs150 instead of Rs100 for medical checkup and Rs350 for an LMV+MYCL licence (as opposed to my Rs220 for LMV alone)
. he had to give 2 photographs–one each on the medical and license forms
There are a few more comments on the post but they can only be seen on my old site against this link.