In a matter concerning the special fee against the allotment of special registration numbers for vehicles before the Supreme Court, wherein the civil appeal has been preferred by the Madhya Pradesh Government against the order of the High Court. A Division Bench comprising Justices L. Nageswara Rao and S. Ravindra Bhat reserved judgment in the case on August 20.
Writ Petition was filed before the High Court in the year 2004, Respondent had questioned:- reservation of registration number and additional fee being charged for being ‘allotted’ particular registration number. The Respondent applied for registration of motorcycle by application but it was declined by an order passed by Registering Authority saying that this number cannot be assigned without payment of special fee. The case is that under Section 41 one Application is contemplated and only one fee is leviable.
At the present moment the written submission has been filed. Senior advocate Manoj Swarup, Amicus Curiae for the case, submitted on Friday that the state governments are not empowered to charge any additional fee for registration, otherwise than as provided under Motor Vehicle Act. In his submission, Swarup has submitted that the Section 41 of the act contemplates application for registration for Motor Vehicles and lays down the whole process for the same including the payment for the registration as under Section 41(2). However, there is no mention of special fee that may be charged for the ‘allotment’ as is done by the State Government in Section 41(6).
Further the Advocate contented that the State Govt merely ‘assigns’ the registration number and no additional fee can be charged for the same. Another argument placed before the Supreme Court, was regarding the rule making power of the Centre. It was asserted that Section 64(o) which envisages the Power of Central Government to determine the fees to be charged for the issue or renewal or alteration of the certificates of registration. Conjointly Section 65 of the act, specifically bars the state government to make rules for the same affair.
“It is submitted that the State Government has assumed to itself the function of ‘allotment’, by the impugned notification: ‘prescribing fee to be charged for registration of motor vehicles by means of reservation’. This is contrary to Section 41(6) of the Act.”