SC Directs Tamil Nadu Govt to Allow Unrestricted Passage for AITP Vehicles

Tamil Nadu Government

The Supreme Court has directed the Tamil Nadu government authorities to permit All India Tourist Permit (AITP) vehicles to traverse the state without any hindrance or obstruction.
A bench comprising Justices B V Nagarathna and Ujjal Bhuyan has issued a notice to the Tamil Nadu government and state transport authorities, seeking their responses by August 12, following a plea filed by K R Suresh Kumar and others.
The petitioners, who are inter-state bus operators holding the AITP, have sought the quashing and setting aside of the state government’s directives dated November 6, 2023, and June 18. These directives mandate the compulsory registration of all buses registered in other states with the regional transport authorities in Tamil Nadu to permit their operation within the state.
The bench stated, “In the meanwhile, the vehicles belonging to the petitioners having the All India Tourist Permit shall be allowed to pass through the state of Tamil Nadu without any hindrance or obstruction.”
The petitioners have explained that they operate a substantial number of buses to transport passengers from neighboring Kerala and other states, and the vehicles must pass through Tamil Nadu due to the area’s topography.
The plea further argued that the directives of the Tamil Nadu government contradict section 46 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 (MVA), which stipulates that a motor vehicle registered in any state is valid throughout India. It further highlighted that in similar proceedings, the Supreme Court had, on December 15, 2023, permitted bus operators to ply their vehicles in Tamil Nadu without undergoing the process of re-registration in the state.
The petitioners have also contended that a June 18 notification issued by the Tamil Nadu transport department requires inter-state bus operators to register their vehicles in the state to regulate the movement of such vehicles. They have sought directions for the state government and transport authorities to ensure unhindered access through Tamil Nadu for all inter-state buses holding a valid AITP.

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