Bombay:Up to 2,818 cars and 5,034 bikes were registered for a fortnight for deliveries to Dussehra here, as people flocked to showrooms on Friday to pick up new vehicles on the auspicious day.
Although RTO officials said they had received many registrations this year, it was still 13% fewer cars and 39% fewer two-wheelers, compared to Dussehra last year, just after the first wave of Covid-19.
The only positive point was that registered cars were 3% more than before Covid (Dussehra 2019). Statistics showed that the total number of cars registered for Dussehra this time was 2,818, up from 2,724 during the pre-Covid era in 2019 and 3,254 at the same festival in 2020.
The number of bikes registered for deliveries from Dussehra this year was 5,034, compared to 7,077 two-wheelers before Covid in 2019 and 8,217 bikes during the festival last year.
In Dussehra, most car and bicycle registrations were in the island city (765 cars and 1,522 bikes), while the fewest car registrations were in Wadala (604) and the fewest bicycles in Borivli RTO (995), according to statistics from the state Department of Transportation.
“As for motorcycles and scooters, registrations over the past two weeks have been lower than in the previous two years. It was 30% less than in 2020 and 28% less than in 2019. A major rush for cars and bikes occurred in 2020, immediately after the first wave of Covid, as many preferred vehicles personnel for transport. It was also a good form of social distancing, from crowded public transport, ”said a senior transport official.
Buying new automobiles here usually peaks in Diwali, Dussehra, Gudi Padwa, and Akshaya Tritiya. These days are considered auspicious for starting a business, moving to a new apartment, buying a new car / two-wheeler, or buying gold (Dhanteras).
Some applicants have requested special license plates, which are chargeable. The numbers are assigned through a computerized system, officials said. Despite fewer staff, the RTOs of Tardeo, Wadala, Andheri and Borivli cleared all entries on time. All new vehicles will have the new BS6 engines with better emission standards and dealers have said they will put high security number plates on the vehicles.
The Transportation Department has authorized car and bicycle dealers to complete vehicle registration and fee payments with minimal involvement of RTO staff. As the whole process is online, there is less chance of corruption, officials said. “This has sped up new booking registrations and buyers are happy to get deliveries on preferred scheduled dates,” added a senior RTO official.
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