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4 Things You Should Do If Pulled Over By The Traffic Police

By Vikas Chandra Das
21 July 2022, 11:46 AM
things to remember when caught by traffic police

When you see a traffic cop wave his hand asking you to pull over, it does not necessarily mean that you are in trouble. There is absolutely no need to panic (unless you have some cause for worry, of course). Maintain a cool head!

The following information will provide you with enough pointers to make the interaction with the police as pleasant and unproblematic as possible!

Here are a Few Things That You Should Do When Pulled Over by the Police

  • Pullover when you feel it’s safe
    • There is no need to hurry things up and slam the breaks. Assess the situation in your head and then pull over slowly to avoid any untoward incident. Follow the directions of the traffic cop.
  • Stay inside the car calmly and don’t panic
    • There is no need to immediately get out of the car the minute you pull over. There is no need to think that you are being pulled up for something wrong – it might just be a routine check-up, for all you know. Turn off the engine and roll down the window to indicate that you are polite and willing to comply.
    • Your body language must be confident and friendly to assure the traffic cop that there is no cause for worry and that you mean no trouble.
    • You may ask the traffic police for the reason as to why you are being pulled up.
  • Be polite and co-operative
    • Do not raise your voice, or appear scared and defiant. The more polite and respectful you are, the faster you will be back on the road driving to your destination. It is always beneficial to be polite and mindful.
    • There may be times where you encounter an individual who is asking you to pull over but you doubt his or her credentials as a traffic cop. This might especially be the case at night. Ask them politely for their proof of identity before engaging with them further.
    • Also, do not succumb to any wrongful demands made by the police. You should refuse assertively, yet politely.
    • If the cop asks you to take a breathalyser test, then do not refuse unless you have a reasonable excuse to do so (such as not wanting to use the device due to the spread of Covid-19), as you might be arrested for not complying.
  • Be ready with the necessary documents: DL, RC, PUC, Insurance, etc.
    • If the traffic police officer asks you to show the car documents, then comply without hesitation.
    • Always carry all the car documents with you in your dashboard and be ready to show them when checked by a cop. The documents that you must possess at all times are – RC Copy of the vehicle, your Driving License, the car insurance papers and the PUC Certificate.
    • An additional identity proof might also come in handy.
    • Carry these documents to ensure that you are free from any fines/ penalties that will accrue in the absence of these documents. Driving without a valid TP car insurance policy is a punishable act and a penalty of INR 2000 is fined.

Worry Not. Answers to Your Burning Questions Are Here:

1. Are Digital Documents Acceptable?

Yes, it is. Driving license and car registrations stored in the DigiLocker and mParivahaan application of the government of India can be produced before the traffic police. The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways have given a directive that these digital documents must be treated at par with the physical copies. A soft copy of car insurance policy is also acceptable. 

2. Should You Leave Without a Challan Receipt?

The traffic police are required to carry a challan book or an e-challan machine in order to penalise you - the absence of the same means that you can receive no penalty. Also, the traffic police cannot take away your driving license without a valid receipt. Your driving license can be seized by the cop when you jump a red light, or for offenses such as overloading, drunken driving, and using your mobile phone or similar gadgets while driving.


It is natural for an individual to feel uneasy when placed under the traffic police radar. The most important thing to remember is to stay calm and respond with a cool head. Take deep breaths and handle the entire interaction with an unperturbed smile and composure. It is important to remember that the traffic police are merely performing their duties. Treat them with politeness and dignity and you’ll be surprised to find that it was a pleasant interaction after all. Carry all the important documents and follow traffic rules all the time.

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