Supreme Court of India has banned Sun film - 001

The Supreme Court of India has banned the use of automotive sun-control film completely, across the country, effective from May 19. It’s mandatory for the entire country to have only the recommended density of tinted glass in place as per the Supreme Court decision. Delhi and Mumbai are the only two cities where the rule has been imposed by the state governments. Until now, films of upto 70% transparency for front and rear windows and 50% transparency for side windows were allowed on cars, but henceforth, even such films will have to be removed (The rule is clear – 70% visibility must for front and rear glasses and 50% for the side glasses). Cars equipped with tinted windshields and windows (not film) will remain out of the law’s ambit though, as the consumer is not responsible for them. It’s notable that some car manufacturers do deliver their cars with a slight tint on side windows. The shade, however, is well within the permissible limits in such cases.

“We prohibit the use of black films of any visual light transmission (VLT) percentage or any other material upon the safety glasses, windscreens (front and rear) and side glasses of all vehicles throughout the country” ruled the apex court.

The recent ban on the use of sun-films has created a drive by various states’ police implementing the same in their region by stopping the vehicles and fining them, removing the sun-films on the spot. Apart from ripping off the film on the windows, the fine for the first offence will be Rs 500 and second offence will be Rs 1,000. Currently the fine for the first offence is Rs 100, escalating to Rs 300 for a repetition. If the car owner resists the removal of the film, the car may even be impounded (Cases will be booked under 92 and 100 of the Central Motor Vehicles Rule read with section 177 of Central Motor Vehicles Act. Those found violating the rule after May 19 will attract penalty Rs 100. If the rule is violated for the second time, the penalty will be Rs 300 while for the third consecutive violation, it will be Rs 300 and the driving licence will be suspended).

Police checks the visibility of tinted glass of a car using a light meter on one of Delhis roads

(Note – Police checks the visibility of tinted glass of a car using a light meter on one of Delhi’s roads )

The Supreme Court’s decision has come in the wake of a litigation filed against the use of sun films in criminal cases where the sun films were misused by criminals to hide behind the dark films while they did various crimes on roads including serious crimes like rape. Road accidents also occur due to use of darker glasses and the visibility of traffic cops on duty too goes down. But the advantage of sun film in this tropical nation cannot be ignored and motorists will face the brunt of this ruling. Maybe in future there will be some invention which can help save passengers inside cars from intense sunlight!

Dealers haven’t yet received orders from manufacturers to stop selling sun film and all the dealers still sell it. The car manufacturers will continue to tint glasses, as there is no ban on this. For those confused between tinting and film – tinting is adding a tinge of colour to the glass itself during its manufacture, and this is factory fitted when you buy a new car. Sun-control film is an accessory applied to the car after its purchase. The problem with the latter is that it is difficult to tell if the sun film you are buying actually complies with opacity regulations.

Supreme Court of India has banned Sun film - 002

Manufacturers like 3M, Vkool, Garware have deemed the ruling unfair. The people say that rather than passing such orders, the court should direct the law enforcement agencies to get their act together. This ruling could also indirectly oppose the Environment Ministry ruling for fuel efficiency standards. No window tint means the air conditioner has to work overtime, increasing emissions and decreasing fuel efficiency.

So apart from window glass tinted from the factory, no additional sun protection can be added to your car’s windows. Even VVIPS cannot escape from this ruling as there is no provision to exempt their vehicles from the existing Motor Vehicle Rules. The Supreme Court has said that a committee headed by the home secretary of a state can give exemption to official cars used by Z and Z+ security covered people (chief minister and governor rank onwards), you may be granted exemption from this law.


Also seeFuel efficiency labelling on Cars will come into effect by 2015



  • bops

    This is very bad decision taken by the SC. They have just thought negative like rape, murder etc… why havent they though positively!!! day light robbery, so security for women & children, effect on environment due to excess usage of AC, low mileage resulting in excess fuel consumption and all these are national waste!!!

    they have made wrong decision !!!! this decision, later after sometime they themselves will change and allow us to use “some new film!!!!” which is approved and they make nice money!!! this is all well planned involving politicians and of course the judges!!!

    this had already happened earlier for the same sun film & helmet rule!!! just think about that!!!

  • Subhendu

    We don’t learn from our mistakes. It appears we are going back to pre independence days – different laws for different classes of people. Do not get me wrong – I am not against the judgment but against the applicability of dual standards. We should prevent crimes but not dual standards to commit crimes.

    The rich can have factory fitted colored glasses enjoy AC and the poor man can non have a low cost alternative to adhere to the set standards of VLT of 70% and 50%. How primitive it is to think that criminals cannot use factory fitted color glasses in vehicles to commit crimes. Do we have ways to verify if this is a factory fitted color glass? Has judgment been passed to stop all new vehicles from being factory fitted with color glass? If not, why penalize the common man.

    Are we setting the precedence for 2 type of laws in our country – may be yes from what it appears currently. Has any effort been made to even understand the impact to the environment, technical opinion on the impacts of this judgement? No PIL’s being filed.

    Here is the multi-crore business in the waiting for the sun-film manufacturers. Wait for removal of films and then get the standard law of VLT applicable by going to court and gaga business again for putting on films which meet the standards. Excellent game plan. Great business for removal of films starts anything from Rs300 to Rs 500.

    I am still unable to believe that we are in free India – no one is still challenging such ambiguous decisions – what happened to the media? Will the media wake up and save the nation? Can active blogs be created and champion a cause for the environment. Why rush through such implementation. Can we extend some time for implementation and think through. Can we voice citizens concerns – document all pros and cons and take an informed decision in a democratic way. Jai Hind.

  • V dhingra

    What a nonsense? Factory fitted glasses with 40% VLT are fine and otherwise 50% VLT is not allowed. God save the country from such mindless rulings…

  • Meerut Gupta

    Just by hearing from a single petotioner how can the supreme court can pass such a ruling withouut consulting millions of car owners in the country. Where the judges have gone for so many years when the glasses have been used. It is an indirect way of establishing monoarchy in a republic country. It makes us to remember the age of emergency in India. The system which is not capable to identify the real culprits tries to punish innocent people. Long live democracy!!!!!!!!

  • Meerut Gupta

    A corrupt country which has a corrupt system of judiciary. They allow factory made tinted glass while they did not allow films of same quality and type. Corruption Corruption every where. How much money has been transformed from car factory owners to pass this rule or judgement. Please allow CBI to investigate.

  • Mathew

    I strongly object this rule. We all have our privacy right. It is a rule made thinking only from one angle. I agree these rule are implemented in some of the less populated forward foreign countries. But they have very low crime rate. Safety is guranteed. Women can walk alone anytime safely with more glamourous dress. Why they have not discussed this in the parliment.

    Think about a situation 1: – when a young women travels alone or with her husband in their car for long dirve, they can be seen easily and gangster will folow them on the highway can easily corner them in a lonely highway. They can rob them and rape them. As we all know about our high crime rate in our country.

    Situation 2:
    Most of the working couple like me who have their new born babies buys car to go with his wife and kid. The comfort of opaque window will help the mother to breast feed. can u imagine this without window sticker.

    Situation 3:
    We know even the police vehicles removed the stickers. But if a police moves the arrested men between court and prinson, any one can kill the arrested men. we know our country crime situation. It is an extra trouble for the police men in giving protection to them.

    Situation 4:
    After immplementation of the rule all the VVIP’s free movement will be stopped. It is like house arresting them. As court given exemtion to z and z+ personals, so it is becoming a easy job for terrorist to identityfy and kill out leader.

    Supreme court should conduct a open election for this rule. We are big country with various cultures and practices. But this rules make us think about british ruling times.

    It looks like judges created this rule to favour terrorists, kidnappers and robbers.

    Please realise and change the rule, before people raise.

    Vande Madaram

  • Nags

    I think our Indian Police is not able to track the bad guys when they flee away in cars. So all the common people are treated now like criminals !!!
    Actually, before this rule came in, there were few criminals getting away. But after this rule, there will be just too many criminals who will eye for whats inside the car, and who is inside the car !!!
    I don’t know why “Supreme” Court did not even think of various scenarios.

    Who is going to save us…. !!!

    -You know common sense is not so common !!!

  • travelling without sunfilms is like,,,taking bath in Rain // walking without shoe in Thar Desert,,,,what supreme court is thinking,,,its just opinion of one guy ,,,and all indians are suffering,,,Now SC should tell,,hoe many crimes they have stopped with this NO-sunfilms rule,,,,how many illegal activities they caught,,,,

  • manu

    This ruling discriminates between haves and have nots. Police will get excuse for harrassing common people and those having tinted glasses would escape .

    This country has become republic for the rich , by the rich and of the rich ….

    God save India

  • Moti Chand Das

    Why Govt not sincere nor serious to the SC order -prohibited of Tinted Glasses in vehicle?
    If Govt not impimenting then why shoud the vehicle owners will take it seriously ?
    Ref:The Supreme Court of India has banned the use of automotive sun-control film completely, across the country, effective from May 19. It’s mandatory for the entire country to have only the recommended density of tinted glass in place as per the Supreme Court decision. Is it not disobedience of SC ? Why so ?

  • justin

    we need privacy on cars ….when we go with family…….these days i hate guys looking at my sisters in the car after remvng sun control film…..and ac effeciency has also very well decreased…cannot get out at noon so heavy sunlight…….stupid bad law this is……only in india i think….