Helmet Laws in India

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 14/03/2022

While you drive your two-wheeler on the road, it is important to ensure that you are following the road safety instructions. One of the top ways to ensure that you are safe is by wearing a suitable helmet. Wearing a helmet ensures that your head and face are saved from major injuries if there is an accident on the road.

Many people are not aware of the fact that wearing a helmet is mandatory if you are driving your vehicle on the road in India. Moreover, many people do not take the helmet-wearing laws in India seriously. Therefore, you might face a fine if you drive without a suitable helmet. Moreover, along with the helmet, having a third-party insurance policy for bikes is also mandatory as per the Indian Motor Vehicles Act.

We at Tata AIG offer a comprehensive bike insurance plan, standalone own damage bike insurance policy, and standalone third-party bike insurance policy. You can buy a suitable insurance policy for a bike online, and the process is hassle-free. And you can also renew your 2 wheeler insurance online from the comfort of your home. Let us understand the helmet laws in India in detail.

Is Driving Without a Helmet Illegal in India?

Yes, driving your two-wheeler without a helmet is illegal in India. However, due to the increasing rates of accidents involving two-wheelers, having a helmet has been made mandatory. Also, many major injuries involve the head, which makes wearing a helmet even more essential.

Also, the number of casualties reported when it comes to two-wheelers is quite alarming, so the government decided to improvise the helmet laws in India stated in the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.

In order to discourage the drivers from driving without a helmet, the government introduced a fine of ₹1000 for not wearing a helmet. Thus, this is the penalty for not wearing a helmet in India.

Is it Mandatory for All Riders to Wear a Helmet?

This has been a topic of discussion among people, and although many people follow the helmet rules in India, the law for helmets regarding the person sitting in the backseat is not clear to many.

If you are also wondering whether the pillion rider should wear a helmet or not, think again! No matter whether the person is sitting in the backseat, they are also susceptible to serious injuries in case an accident takes place. So, wearing a helmet is essential for everyone, no matter which seat you are sitting on.

It is mandatory under the law for pillion riders as well as the riders in the front seat to wear a helmet. If you fail to comply with the helmet rules in India, you might face hefty fines.

What are the Rules of Wearing Helmets in India?

The Motor Vehicles Act of 1988 was established to make helmet regulations in India for people who are riding on the roads in India. Over the years, several amendments have been made to the Act so that it has more inclusions and covers a wide range of aspects when it comes to riding on the roads.

In the Motor Vehicles Amendment Act 2019, there was an addition of 63 clauses that included increased penalties for several traffic offences. One of the offences mentioned in the amendment was an increased penalty for not wearing a helmet.

In Section 129 of this Act, it is stated that any individual who is over 4 years of age has to wear ‘protective headgear’ while riding a bike. The rule applies to both the drivers and the pillion riders.

In the law, there are also specific conditions related to helmets that you can wear:

  • According to Section 129(a), the materials used to build the helmet, and the shape of the helmet should be such that it offers maximum protection to anyone who is wearing it.

  • According to Section 129(b), the helmet must be fastened to the head of the driver and the pillion rider with fasteners such as straps. This ensures that the helmet will not fall off the head if there is an accident on the road. If you do not comply with the rules of wearing a helmet in India, you might have to pay a fine of ₹1000 as stated in Section 194D of this Act. Moreover, non-compliance can also lead to a suspension of your driving license for three months.

Anyone belonging to the Sikh community who wears a turban while riding or driving a two-wheeler on the road is exempt from the motorcycle helmet laws in India.

Which Types of Helmet are Unacceptable?

The helmet laws in India state that wearing a half helmet is not allowed as it does not offer optimal protection to your head. However, the previously stated Section 129(a) also mandates certain specifications regarding the full-face helmets that you can use. In addition, the Government of India has issued guidelines mandating all manufacturers of helmets in India to make helmets that comply with the Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS) and are according to the new helmet rule in India 2021.

Certain regulations regarding the helmets include:

  • The thickness of the helmet must be 22-25mm, and good-quality foam should be used
  • The weight limitation of the helmet was reduced to 1.2kg from 1.5kg
  • The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has mandated all helmets to have an ISI mark. Without this mark, selling helmets is considered a legal offence and can lead to punishments.
  • The material of the eye-covering in the helmet has to be completely transparent so that there is no obstruction in the sight of the driver.
  • Lastly, all helmets should pass the tests prescribed as per the BIS. These include absorption tests in different weather conditions.

Thus, these are some of the helmet wearing laws in India, and everyone who is driving on the roads must comply with these laws. Many people have objected to the stringent laws, so several states have introduced temporary provisions. You can check with your state regarding the helmet rules in India.


Wearing a helmet is compulsory as per the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, and you might face a penalty for not wearing a helmet in India. Wearing a helmet is not just to comply with the law; it is also to ensure that you are safe while you are on the road. Along with the helmet, you must have a valid bike insurance plan so that you are protected from financial losses if there is an accident. Also, like a helmet, third-party bike insurance is mandatory as per the law. With Tata AIG, you can buy the right two-wheeler insurance policy, and you can also use the bike insurance premium calculator to know the amount of premium you need to pay.

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