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Renewing DL at the RTO without touts/bribes

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Private transport

 My wife and I went yesterday to the Indiranagar RTO to renew her DL.  As soon as we stepped into "the zone" there were touts offering help.  We, of course, ignored them and walked up to the RTO.  

As we walked up we realized that my wife's DL said "RTO BNG CENTRAL" (Koramangala) and we wondered what trouble that would mean.  But we decided to check anyway.

There was a helpdesk there.  It was operational.  We asked the lady there if we could renew the license here.  She gave us the forms and asked us to check at Window 3 if it was possible.  We also realized there was a medical fitness certificate (completely in Kannada) to be got from a doctor.

At Window 3 there was a reasonably helpful lady.  She told my wife that it was possible to do it there.  She confirmed if the address remained unchanged.  She asked us to write a letter requesting that the license be renewed there.   

We paid the Rs.250 fee at the cash counter and my wife went to get her MC done.

There was a doctor down there (Dr.Lokesh) who certified my wife medically fit.  He also helped her with a cover and smart card application and Rs.25 postal stamps (the RTO posts your smart card DL home).  He charged Rs.50 for all this (I think stamps were separate. 

She went back upstairs and submitted the forms at Window 3.  She was told to go and get her photo and thumb-print taken.  We then left.  We must have spent about an hour or a bit more.  They said this will take 15-20 days as the DL was issued in Koramangala.  No problem.  

So - please don't fall for the touts there.  The whole process is simple and anyone should be able to do it without any outside assistance.  Keep the following documents

a. Proof of address if your address has changed (Electricity bill, LIC policy) - there are some 8.  Bank passbook is NOT allowed.

b. Application form

c. MC - get it signed by the good doctor below

d. Passport photos

e. Pen, plain paper, stapler, etc

You don't need any tout there to do this.




nl.srinivas's picture

Got my DL (long time ago)

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I got my DL about three years ago without any help from these touts. I took my driving test on the test track on tumkur road and failed the test. Passed the test next time I took it. There is absolutely no need to go to any tout unless you want to get a license without knowing how to ride/drive sensibly. 

Most of the driving schools are an apology for a driving school. The driving schools also "help" you get the license. 

The more I think about it the more I get convinced that it is not the system it is us who are corrupt and want an easy way out in everything.


Naveen's picture

Agree with Srinivas

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Touts abound at every RTO, despite notices that clearly ask people not to use them. How come they are still around then ? Because many people still use them! There isn't any other satisfactory explanation to this. If one visits an RTO in a car, touts swoop down on him & this is proof that most customers for touts are the well off car owners.

When I had changed address for my vehicle regns & DLs from Koramangala back to Indiranagar some six years ago, it had been done quite easily without "assistance" from any tout. Thus, the system does work if one accepts laid down procedures instead of criticizing or laying too much emphasis on the quality of work or govt offices.

I agree with what what Srinivas says above - "it is not the system it is us who are corrupt and want an easy way out in everything". We do not want to be clean & when some documents cannot be produced for whatever reasons, we try to circumvent rules & laws & are ready to engage touts or pay bribes to get these kind of jobs done.

Some people are impatient to the point that they feel too strongly about normal procedural delays & justify appointing touts even if all their papers are in order, claiming that it's a headache to get a job done in govt offices.

All of the general public suffer as a result.

silkboard's picture

Ditto, can get things done w/o touts

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I have visited KR Puram RTO a few times (changes to DL, address, then smart card format). Same story - touts around, but if you read all information carefully and use the help desk (and can manage some kannada, helps) available, don't have to pay anything extra.

However, here is an interesting incident that happened when I was there few years ago to get address change on DL:

  • Tout overheard my question at the help desk, and came up with this pitch, "saar - they will keep the license, you will have nothing for a month, problem if cops stop you for checking."
  • Help desk person didn't reply, though he did hear the tout's pitch
  • While I walked towards cabin of the RTO officer (forget the name and exact title now), tout made his offer "DL in 1 day, Rs 2000!"
  • I asked the RTO comsnr about it. And he said nothing like that, you get a receipt that would fill in as a temp DL till you get the updated DL back.

Now the climax.

  • While the RTO Cmsnr was explaining the paperwork requirements, the same tout walked in to the cabin, almost casually, as if this was his place. He picked some files from a drawer, left a few back, and casually walked out.
  • I asked RTO Cmsnr about touts in general, and he said, "see, you can get your work done in 30 Rs, or 2000 Rs. All information is here, we are here to help. But if people still want to work with the touts, what can we do?"

Obviously, I didn't ask him about the casualness with which that particular tout and few others (who knows who is an employee, who is not, they don't wear any ID badges) kept walking in and out of his office. And also not about possible arrangements with the tout.

This was 3 years ago. When I was there 2 months back, office seemed better, seemed like there were lot less touts roaming around.

n's picture


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Still remember the time I went to Jayanagar RTO to get the first 2-wheeler (gearless) license a while ago (late 90s) - took at least 6 trips (6-8 don't remember exact number) on bicycle no less! But gave no bribe and used no touts.

s_yajaman's picture

Renewed my D/L today and wife's car FC

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 Another trip to the Indiranagar RTO today.  Had to get my D/L renewed and my wife had to get a Fitness Certificate for her 15 year old car.

BTW - my wife's DL arrived by registered post in about 20 days after she had applied for it.

As usual there were touts aplenty offering to do the jobs for us.  We assured them that we would come back to them in case of trouble :).

We had all the documents ready.  My booklet D/L issued in 1988 was in tatters.  The lady at counter 3 was annoyed at the state of the D/L.  I apologized and said that I would keep it better next time.  Anyway she checked all the documents.  She asked me to write a letter for the change in address and to also attach a duplicate D/L form.  Did both.  Paid the fee.  She asked me to go the thumb-printing and photograph section.  Did that.  All done in 45 minutes.  The lady at counter 3 is very efficient and has a no-nonsense approach.

Then the FC.  This process starts only at 12:30 p.m. That is done near the Bangalore One centre (the part of the BDA complex adjacent to Old Madras Road).  My wife had all the documents.  The inspector grumbled a bit.  He then inspected her car and said that the license plate was bent and there were dents (I straightened out the bend in the plate).  He asked her to start the car, checked the lights, brakes and indicators.  She then had to run around a bit to pay the fee and get some signatures.  We were done by 2:00 p.m.   The process is not laid out clearly anywhere.  But with a bit of persistence one can get by without an agent.

Moral of the story.  No need for any agents.  The D/L renewal process is straightforward.  

Go to the RTO where you were issued the D/L.  If there is change in address write an application out on a blank paper and attach some proof of address (LIC policy, Electricity Bill, Water Bill, Ration Card are some).  Fill out Form 9 and the Medical Certificate by the doctor down there.  Buy a cover and stamps for Rs.25.  Write out your address on it.

Go to counter 3.  The lady will write out the fee to be paid.  Go pay the fee.  Go back to Counter 3.  She will initial the set of forms and send you for the photo and thumb-print.  Hand the forms to the person there.  She will click your photo and take your thumb-print Go back to Counter 4.   Submit the set of documents.  You will get a receipt for the same.

Job done.






Drive safe.  It is not just the car maker which can recall its product.

Naveen's picture

DL in 20 days ?

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20 days - not bad. We were told 1 month & it's already been three weeks now. Will tell my wife to wait some more time & make a visit, but I'm sure it will arrive within a month.

The lady at counter 3 is very efficient and has a no-nonsense approach

- Good description: We had found the lady supdt exactly the same !

s_yajaman's picture

Got my license yesterday

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My license arrived by regd. post yesterday.  So about 15 days from application to dispatch.  Not bad at all.


Drive safe.  It is not just the car maker which can recall its product.

murali772's picture

adralli doddadu aenidde'?

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But, surprising isn't it when we check out things personally and find that certain improvements have indeed been effected.

My wife's license was expiring, and therefore, I called up my 'major domo', whom I have retained from my hands-on business days, and asked him to attend to it. Now, while we had shifted residence to Koramangala, and I was keen on having the new address incorporated, he was more comfortable getting it done through his 'contact' (same native place) in Indiranagar RTO. Given the scenario, he came up with various excuses, and it dragged on.

That's when I saw Yajamaanra post on the subject. So, I girded up my loins, and decided to check out things for myself. I went over to the Koramangala RTO office in the BDA shopping complex to do a recce, before taking my wife (who incidentally leads a lot busier life than me) along. Locating it was a bit tricky, with hardly any helpful signages anywhere in the complex. And, the biggest put off is the route past a line of stinking toilets (stinking even at the opening time of 10.30AM), and up two flights of dingy and narrow staircases.

But, once you reach the reception, you are greeted by a 'May I help you board?' desk, manned by two really helpful gentlemen (ready to respond to queries in English even), one of whom I noticed was handi-capped (only one hand). The handi-capped man quickly examined the Form 9 that I had downloaded from the web-site and filled out, and after seeing that it had been filled out correctly, he gave me a medical certificate form to be filled out. This turned out to be in Kannada, and my request for an English form was turned down with a polite 'no stock'.

Whatever, this was supposed to be only a recce exercise, and I returned home with the info I had collected, and a kind of a confidence that it was all within my capabilities to manage (well, Yajamaanru had managed, hadn't he :)))).

What I had failed to notice, and what the helpdesk man didn't readily tell me then, was the ready availability of a Dr Khan, MBBS, just round the corner, offering the required certification services. In the event, my wife got the form filled out by a doctor, who visits her school twice a week, but, who, being sufficiently well established in his circles, hadn't bothered to make himself a 'seal'.

As such, when we went over to the RTO office yesterday morning, the Superintendent at the office, a lady with a pleasant disposition, politely told us that she can't accept the application for further processing without the seal. We were contemplating going back to look for a doctor who had a seal, when I chanced to check the matter out with the man at the reception. He pointed out to Dr Khan's board through the window, and thereafter, things moved with lightning speed.

Dr Khan gave us an English form, and the whole process of filling it out, his attesting it, and selling us a Rs 30 postal envelope (of which he keeps stock), took not more than 5 minutes. His charge was just Rs 60. We then went back to the Superintendent lady, who readily endorsed the fee amount of Rs 200 + 200 + 50, which I paid at the cash counter, after standing in a queue for less than 5 minutes. With the printed receipts, we went back to the Superintendent, who directed us to a clerk at a neighboring desk, who compiled all the documents together, wrote out a slip and directed us to the photo room. Without even a queue in the photo room, we were through with it in another few minutes, and back to the Superintendent. She took a look at the endorsements on the paper slip, confirmed it was all in order, and told us that we will receive the DL within 15 days by post. We thanked her and headed out. It was only 11 in the morning and we still had most of the day left.

All in all, a satisfying experience. I don't know if it had anything to do with the day being a Tuesday, which possibly people liked to avoid when applying for a license. Whatever, the experience has clearly shown that these kinds of jobs aren't as formidable as they appear, or they are made to appear by brokers, and they can be accomplished faster if you apply yourself to the task (A broker tried to get into the picture in the doctor's office; but, I made it quite clear to him that I would like to handle the matter myself).

The problem that needs urgent attention relates largely to cleanliness and orderliness of the office premises, want of which is a common characteristic of most government offices - check this. In this respect, however, at least the Bangalore-One offices that I have chanced to visit have been exceptions. Obviously, the government can do it if it wants.

Muralidhar Rao
rs's picture

Renewing my License

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Inspired by this post and in spite of cycnical comments by friends and family members I decided to renew my license the `clean' way. I downloaded all the forms from the web and filled them out and went to the Yeswantpur RTO.

The first problem is that there is no proper signage and no one at the help desk. I went around 2pm as I need to get photo etc before that and I thought going there at 12.30 pm woud be a bad idea. Unfortunately, it appeared that that was the best time to go - the morning rush has cleared by then.

I went up to the 3rd floor, from where I was sent to the second. On the second, there is basically one guy who does all the work - the rest of the people just seem to be hanging around. Anyway, he told me that I needed the medical done and needed to get a self-adressed stamped envelope, a file, and a string to tie up all the papers.

All this is conveniently sold by the xerox shop people. Unlike Srivatsa's  experience I couldnt find a medical doctor around the corner, so made a trip to KC general hospital to get the medical thing done. This required some running around in the hospital but got done - with no corruption and in fact, no fees. I was a little puzzled by this but I suspect it may have been that the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing. 

This morning around noon I went back there. It was never made clear what needs to be written on the file I bought and that I needed another cover for my old DL. After several trips up and down from the 2nd to the 3rd to the first etc. I finally had all the paperwork together. At which the competent guy  told me that I now had to meet the superintendent for him to initial. By this time it was 1.15 and the boss was out to lunch or something. The CG told me to come back at 2.30 but I cant go today.

I'm not sure if the CG is taking me for a ride as other people seem to get their initialing from him and were told the fees from him etc. Anyway, so far I have spent 2-2.5 hours at the place and my work isnt done. I suppose I have to make at least one more trip there. The only good thing is that I havent paid any bribe and as of now have not yet paid the fees, as the CG told me that the superintendent will tell me that. Finally, when I pointed out that the super was nowhere to be found, he initialled most of the stuff and told me how much I needed to pay  ( around 270 ) but it was too late to get it done today.

I can understand now why most people who have regular jobs prefer to pay their way out of this waiting. If there were clear signs and instructions it would greatly help. Its not clear

1. Where you have to go

2. What is required of you apart from the forms.

3. How many photos - they say 3 but seem to want only 2.

4. All this additional stuff with the files and what needs to be written on them.

I suppose most people pay an agent to do this and the agent knows the procedure. If a person earns say 60K a month, that means 2K a day - for 8 hours work. Which means Rs. 250 an hour. Which means for 2.5 hours it is tecnically worth around 625 rupees. It costs approx Rs. 100 to get it done through an agent, I would think. So the math is clear.

I guess, finally, I will have the virtue of having done it cleanly. But I'm starting to think that perhaps that virtue is not worth the 2.5-3.5 hours I would have spent on it.






sanjayv's picture

An alternative approach

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 I wanted to talk about an alternate approach I tried for RTO stuff.  I took a lifetime membership from the Automobile Association of South India.  That was something like 4K.  They do a lot of RTO related stuff for you - for the RTO fees.  No extra required.  That was my compromise for mental sanity while avoiding bribing.

rs's picture

Sanjay In fact, I was

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In fact, I was wondering the same thing - I did my first ( and only one so far  ) driving test  20 years ago in Bombay with the WIAA. I was wondering if there was a chapter here as well. Thanks for the information - I will look in to it.






sanjayv's picture

@ Ramesh

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 You can google for automobile association of Southern India

Office is on St. Mark's road closer to the SBI circle than Residency Road intersection.

rs's picture

Renewing my License - Part 2 and 3

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I called up the SIAA - but it seemed like it was not worth joining them simply to get a license as it seemed like I would have to go with them to the RTO in any case. So I went the Yeswantput RTO in January - and after some running around finally submitted my license for renewal. In return I was given a piece of paper ( which was in fact some recycled piece of paper with something printed on the back ) with a Kannada stamp on which they had handwritten my old license number. I was told to come back after 45 days since it was a change of state.

Two months have gone by and earlier this week I went again. After politely waiting for the officials to turn up I was told by the guy to come back in the afternoon - after 1:30 or 2:30 - at which point the official would check my file.

So I dont know - so far I have not paid a bribe or any extra money and I still hope to get my license without paying it. But I am reaching the limit of my patience as I have been there already about 5 times and as of now I still dont know if I will get it. I can now completely understand why someone would pay a tout to get the license in one day or so.

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