Meaning Behind Various Number Plate Colours in India

Meaning Behind Various Number Plate Colours in India

Have you ever reflected on the wide range of distinct vehicle registration plates used throughout the country?

Vehicle registration number plate

While the diversity of Indian culture and traditions is often a topic of discussion, have you ever reflected on the wide range of distinct vehicle registration plates used throughout the country? Seeing vehicles with white, yellow, or red number plates is a familiar sight on roads, and with the growing popularity of electric vehicles, cars with green registration plates are also becoming more common. Moreover, it is quite common to encounter specific cars in urban settings featuring blue registration plates. Have you ever thought about the meaning behind the different colors used in registration plates?

Here's a brief overview to help you understand the various categories of car registration plates in India and their respective meanings.

White Number Plate

White-colored number plates, exclusively designated for non-commercial private vehicles, are the most commonly seen type in India. The arrangement of the white registration plate differs based on the state or union territory where the vehicle is registered. Nevertheless, the format comprises a combination of letters and numbers, representing the state code, district code, and the vehicle's registration number.

Yellow Number Plate

Another frequently used color for vehicle registration plates in India is yellow. Commercial vehicles such as taxis, buses, trucks, and similar types use yellow registration plates. These vehicles utilize yellow plates with black text. Similar to white plates, yellow plates also follow an alphanumeric format, including the state code, district code, and the vehicle's specific registration number.

Green Number Plate

With the increasing popularity of electric vehicles, the number of vehicles displaying green registration plates is becoming more noticeable on the roads. The green number plate is exclusively assigned to electric vehicles, regardless of whether they are four-wheelers, three-wheelers, or two-wheelers. These registration plates have a green background with white text, following a format similar to that of the white and yellow plates, containing both letters and numbers.

Red Number Plate

During road travels, it's common to encounter vehicles displaying red number plates.This registration type is temporary and typically associated with vehicles used for testing purposes. Typically, test drive vehicles at car dealerships are equipped with red number plates. These plates are assigned to vehicles that have yet to undergo registration with the Regional Transport Office (RTO) but are currently being utilized on public roads for activities such as transportation, demonstration, or testing. The text format on these registration plates remains consistent with that of others.

Blue Number Plate

While less common, certain vehicles bear blue license plates, typically spotted on urban streets, indicating they belong to foreign diplomats, embassies, or consulates. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issues these blue number plates, Usually featuring white letters and numbers. Additionally, they might display the logo or emblem representing the diplomat or embassy's country. These vehicles are granted specific privileges and protections, such as exemption from local taxes, tolls, or other charges.

Black Number Plate

Recently, certain cars have been noticed on city streets, featuring black number plates. Usually, black registration plates indicate a commercial vehicle registered as a self-driven rental car. The issuance of black number plates is strictly reserved for commercial vehicles across the nation.

Red Number Plate With Emblem Of India

Red number plates adorned with the Indian government's emblem are commonly seen on vehicles owned and operated by either the central government or state governments.These vehicles are designated to transport senior government officials, diplomats, and other dignitaries. Their number plates feature the 'Lion Capital of Ashoka', which serves as India's national emblem. 

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