One of the major causes of pollution, especially in the urban landscape, is the exhaust gases from automobiles. Governments across the world issue emission norms specifying limits of harmful gas emissions from all vehicles and automobile manufacturers have to make sure their products adhere to these guidelines.
The problem, however, is that there is no guarantee that a vehicle will continue to follow them over the course of its lifetime. It will only do this if it is maintained properly. To check for any violation, government mandates yearly or half yearly tests of every vehicle plying on the road. In India, we call it the PUC (pollution under control) check. As per the government’s ruling, if a car is caught plying without a valid PUC certificate, the owner is liable to be fined. But due to lack of proper check mechanism, many vehicles on our roads ply without having a PUC certificate, in turn causing more pollution than allowed!
Most of the big Indian cities are among the most polluted ones in the world. Pollution levels in our metros are deteriorating drastically every year. The number of vehicles is increasing exponentially on our roads, but the infrastructure is not developing at a matching pace. Not just this, the traffic law implementation is also extremely poor and our city roads look more of a chaos. Club all of this with lack of road sense and the end resultants are huge traffic jams all the time. It is also proven that vehicles pollute more when they move at lower speeds. And if majority of the cars do not comply with the PUC check limits, the problem increases manifold.
Now, to curb this issue and to increase PUC check compliance further, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA) has instructed all the car insurance companies NOT to insure a vehicle till it complies with PUC check. As insurance of car is mandatory and is to be renewed periodically, it indirectly mandates owners to get their vehicles’ PUC checked at regular intervals.
IRDA has taken this decision following a Supreme Court judgement of 2017 where it has asked insurers not to insure vehicles without a valid PUC certificate. This is a welcome decision and it will definitely increase the compliance of PUC check. Getting a PUC check is very easy. You can find a PUC check facility at petrol stations or mobile vans parked at various locations across cities. The test itself takes only a few minutes and a certificate is issued immediately – not at all a hassle of any kind whatsoever!
We have already talked a lot about the important of insurance for a vehicle. It is our protector against massive financial implications arising out of untoward incidents like road accidents or thefts. Not only this, some policies also cover damages to the property of a third party involved in the accident along with costs emanating from treatment of injuries caused to him/her.
Car or bike insurance is a mandate by the Government for all car & two wheeler vehicles that ply on our road. And, now this new IRDA ruling, which necessitates a PUC check for car insurance renewals, will definitely help in increasing compliance of PUC check which, inadvertently will result in some reprieve for our cities from the menace of air pollution.