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Permit to visit Rohtang Pass, Leh - Ladakh & Inner line Permits for Ladakh

Posted: July 03, 2017 by admin

Permit for Rohtang pass and Ladakh

Be it Rohtang pass, Manali-Leh highway or restricted areas of Ladakh, visitors are required to obtain special permit to visit these places. While permits in Ladakh are mandatory due to security reasons, permit system in Manali is new that came into effect from 2014 after intervention of National Green Tribunal (NGT) which is concerned about the fragile ecology of Rohtang area. NGT has limited the number of vehicles visiting Rohtang pass. To control the traffic flow, NGT has ordered Himachal government to issue permits to the limited number of vehicles (for tourism purpose) on daily basis. However, NGT has not restricted movement of tourists going beyond Rohtang pass (Ladakh, Lahaul-Spiti and Pangi) but as the Himachal government was facing problem in identifying the vehicles that are actually going beyond Rohtang pass and those going to Rohtang pass, it has started issuing separate permits in both the cases. Here we should make clear that permits in Manali are issued for vehicles and not for the persons while in Ladakh permits are requested for individuals.

Permit to visit Rohtang pass

Daily 860 petrol and 440 diesel vehicles can be issued online permit to go to Rohtang pass. Vehicles are required to pay Rs 50 towards congestion charges and Rs 500 towards permit charges online. As per the NGT directions dated June 19, 2017, daily limit of vehicles that can go to Rohtang has been increased from 1,200 to 1,300 vehicles. Of the total, 1,200 permits can be issued to Himachali or non-Himachali vehicles but 75 permits will be reserved for non-Himachali vehicles and 25 permits will be reserved for Himachali vehicles other than registered in Kullu district.
NGT has limited number of vehicles to control the carbon emission and not the number of persons (however just 1,300 vehicles can carry a certain number of persons but many vehicles can be occupied to capacity while others may have just one or two tourists as well)
The permits can be booked here http://admis.hp.nic.in/ngtkullu/Home/InformatoryScreen
Vehicle registration number, registration date, pollution under control certificate issuing authority and expiry date, type of engine (petrol or diesel), driver name and driving license number are mandatory. Vehicles older than 10 years are not allowed to go to Rohtang pass.

Permit to go to Ladakh, Lahaul-Spiti or Pangi

In fact there is no limit of vehicles going beyond Rohtang pass for any purpose. Kullu administration has now made the permit system online. Congestion charges of Rs 50 are required to be paid to be able to book the permit. For now (June 2017), administration has set a daily limit of 900 vehicles that can obtain permits to cross/go beyond Rohtang pass. In any case, if permit is not available online (all online permits booked/server down), the offline/manual permit in emergency would be issued from SDM office at Manali.
Please note that the permit is issued on the registration number and other details of vehicle and not for any person.
The permits can be booked here http://admis.hp.nic.in/ngtkullu/BeyondRohtang/InformatoryScreen
Vehicle registration number, registration date, pollution under control certificate issuing authority and expiry date, type of engine (petrol or diesel), destination (Leh, Kaza/Spiti, Lahaul or Pangi), seating capacity of vehicle, number of passengers, name of any passenger, driver name and driving license number are some mandatory information that is required to submitted to book the permit online. Vehicles older than 10 years are not allowed to go to Rohtang pass or beyond.
If any tourist is come from Leh to Manali, then there is no need of permit to cross Rohtang pass. Permit is required only to go from Manali towards Leh/Lahaul-Spiti.

Rs 5,000/- fine for violation of rule

National Green Tribunal (NGT) in its order of June 2017 has directed Himachal Pradesh government to fine those vehicles with Rs 5,000/- which do not comply with its order and make misuse of the permit. If a person is booking permit to go beyond Rohtang (Lahaul, Spiti, Pangi or Ladakh) but is going only till Rohtang pass will be liable for this fine.Similarly, if a vehicle goes beyond Rohtang (Lahaul, Spiti, Pangi or Ladakh) on permit of Rohtang pass then the owner is also being fined by administration. If a person provides false information, has no permit, is overloaded or trying to fool the authority by not having valid permit to go to Rohtang is being fined by district administration. According to NGT order, government will have to fine vehicles violating the rules by Rs 5,000 for two times but if the same vehicle is caught violating the order for third time, vehicle's registration/license would be cancelled from the concerned registration authority and that vehicle cannot run on Indian roads.

Inner line permits in Ladakh

All persons (except for residents of J&K residents) are required to obtain protected/restricted area permit/inner line permit to visit most of the places of Ladakh which shares its border with China and Pakistan. While foreigners are required to travel in group and are required to book permit through local travel agent who (agent) would be responsible if tourist do not abide by the rules framed by government, the domestic tourists can apply for permit themselves without need of travel agent. However, even foreigner national can apply for permit online by mentioning the name of the registered travel agent.
The online permits can be booked here http://www.lahdclehpermit.in/
One can also book permit with help of his travel agent after arrival in Leh.
Pakistani, Chinese and Afghanistan nationals are required to obtain prior permission from Ministry of Home Affairs.
Tourists (domestic) are required to carry original copy of photo ID (Passport, Driving License, Aadhaar or Voter Card) while foreigners are required to carry passport with valid visa.
Special permit to visit Tso Moriri from Pangong via Chushul can be obtained from the office of the deputy commissioner at Leh. This permit is issued only after ensuring that permit would not be misused and the current situation is safe to issue the permit. Many times, administration can deny the permit for security reasons. Foreign nationals are not allowed to visit some of the places in Ladakh.
Tourists (both foreigners and domestic) are required to pay Wildlife fee, Environment fee and Red Cross fee to be able to obtain the permit.
Places for which permit is required:
- Khardong, Khalsar, Trith upto Warsi and Yarma Gonbo, Disket, Hunder, Turtuk, Pachathang, Tyakshi in Nubra Sub-Division
- Upshi, Dipling, Puga, TsomoRiRi/Korzok in Nyoma Sub-Division.
- Kharu, Changla, Durbuk, Tangtse, Lukhung, Spangmik, Man-merag(Pangong Lake) in Nyoma Sub-Division.
- Upshi, Chumathang, Mahe, Loma Bend in Nyoma Division.
- Khalsi,Domkhar, Skurbuchan, Hanu, Baima, Dha in Khalsi Sub-Division.

Frequently Asked Questions on Protected Area Permit(PAP)/Restricted Area Permit (RAP) regime

Qn.1 : Which are the areas covered by the Protected Area Permit (PAP)/Restricted Area Permit (RAP) regime?
Answer: Under the Foreigners (Protected Areas) Order, 1958, all areas falling between the ‘Inner line’, as defined in the said order, and the International Border of the State have been declared as a Protected Area. Currently, Protected Areas are located in the following States: -
(i) Whole of Arunachal Pradesh
(ii) Parts of Himachal Pradesh
(iii) Parts of Jammu & Kashmir
(iv) Whole of Manipur
(v) Whole of Mizoram
(vi) Whole of Nagaland
(vii) Parts of Rajasthan
(viii) Whole of Sikkim (partly in Protected Area and partly in Restricted Area)
(ix) Parts of Uttarakhand
However, as per the Circular dated 30.12.2010 issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, the entire area of the States of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland has been excluded from the Protected Area regime notified under the Foreigners (Protected Areas) Order 1958, initially for a period of one year w.e.f. 1.1.2011, subject to the following conditions:-
(i) Citizens of Afghanistan, China, Pakistan and foreign nationals having their origin in these countries would continue to require prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs before their visit to the States of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland.
(ii) Citizens of Myanmar visiting the States of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland beyond 16 Kms from the IndoMyanmar border would continue to require prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs for visiting these States.
(iii) All foreigners visiting these States will register themselves with the Foreigners Registration Officer (FRO) of the District they visit within 24 hours of their arrival.
Under the Foreigners (Restricted) Areas Order, 1963, the following areas have been declared as `Restricted’ Areas :-
(i) Andaman & Nicobar Islands - Entire Union Territory
(ii) Sikkim - Part of the State


Qn.2 : What are the guidelines for obtaining Protected Area Permit/ Restricted Area Permit?
Answer: A foreign national is not normally allowed to visit a Protected / Restricted Area unless it is established to the satisfaction of the Government that there are extra-ordinary reasons to justify such a visit. Every foreigner, except a citizen of Bhutan, who desires to enter and stay in a Protected or Restricted Area, is required to obtain a special permit from a competent authority delegated with powers to issue such a special permit to a foreigner, on application. In cases where the powers have not been delegated to any subordinate authority by the Government of India, the application for special permit should be referred to the Ministry of Home Affairs for prior approval, at least eight weeks before the date of the expected visit.
With a view to promote tourism, some areas (notified by the Government of India from time to time) can be visited by foreign tourists, either in groups, or as a couple in the case of a husband and wife, or by individuals, after obtaining the necessary permit from the competent authority. Necessary powers have been delegated to various authorities to issue the special permit, without the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs, to facilitate foreign tourists subject to the following exceptions:
(i) Special instructions applicable to foreign diplomats and members of the United Nations and International Organisations holding Diplomatic / Official Passport are issued by the Ministry of External Affairs.
(ii) Citizens of Afghanistan, China and Pakistan and foreign nationals of Pakistani origin, shall not be issued a special permit without the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.


Qn.3 : What are the specific instructions to be followed by PAP/RAP holders?
Answer:
1. The permit is valid for group tourists consisting of two or more persons only.
2. The permit is valid for the specific tourist circuit/route and the specific entry / exit point. No area other than the ones indicated in the permit shall be visited.
3. The permit holder must keep sufficient number of photocopies of the permit as he/she may be required to deposit a copy at each point of entry/exit.
4.The permit holder shall not stay in the restricted/protected area after the expiry of the permit.
5. A foreigner must enter/exit the North-Eastern States by air only.
6. A foreigner can travel within the North Eastern states through the National Highways or by air. While travelling by road, the tour should be undertaken largely through the National Highways. Where the places to be visited are situated on a National Highway, no other road should be utilised. In cases where the places, which are to be visited, are not on a National Highway, the tour should be undertaken in such a way that the maximum distance is travelled on a National Highway, restricting the utilisation of other road routes to the minimum.


Qn. 4 : What are the specific instructions to be followed by Travel Agents, Tour operators and Owners of Guest Houses/hotels?
Answer :
1. Travel agencies/tour operators shall ensure that the tourist groups sponsored by them are in possession of valid Restricted/Protected Area Permit.
2. It shall be the responsibility of the travel agents/tour operators to ensure that the tourist groups do not go to places other than the ones that are permitted and also ensure that they do not stay there after the expiry of the valid period.
3. Owners of the guest houses/hotels must ensure that only foreigners with valid Restricted/Protected Area Permits stay with them. It is mandatory for the guest houses/hotels and also the individuals, to inform the local police about the arrival/departure of a foreigner within 24 hours if one foreigner stays with them.


Qn. 5 : What is the procedure for grant of Protected Area/Restricted Area Permit:
Answer:
(1) Foreign nationals coming as Group Tourists may submit an application for the grant of Protected/Restricted Area Permit to the Indian Mission in their country before coming to India. The Indian Mission may grant the Permit after due scrutiny, keeping in view the instructions issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs in this regard. However, the Missions shall refer cases which are not covered by the powers delegated to them, for grant of Protected/ Restricted Area Permit, to the Ministry of Home Affairs for prior clearance.
(2) If foreign nationals, who are already in the country, desire to visit any area covered by the Protected /Restricted Area regime as group tourists, they should submit the requisite application to any of the authorities to whom the powers to issue such a special permit have been delegated. However, cases which are not covered by the powers delegated to the State Governments, or to the subordinate authorities, shall be referred to the Ministry of Home Affairs, with the recommendation of the State Government, for prior clearance.
(3) In all cases received directly in the Ministry of Home Affairs for grant of Protected/Restricted Area Permit, the requisite clearance would be conveyed by the Ministry of Home Affairs only after obtaining the recommendations of the State Government concerned.
(4) In all cases relating to grant of PAP/RAP for an individual foreign tourist, the proposal would require prior clearance from the Ministry of Home Affairs. The requisite clearance would be conveyed by MHA only on the basis of the recommendation of the State Government concerned.

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>> Click to book permit to visit Rohtang pass

>> Click to book permit to go beyond Rohtang pass

>> Click to book inner line permits for restricted areas of Ladakh

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