In a move which can at best be described as bureaucratic fumbling and local favoritism, Himachal Government has decided to ban vehicles registered outside Himachal Pradesh, from plying on the Manali – Rohtang Pass route!
While the vehicles from out of state have been completely barred from traveling to Rohtang Jot, an exception has been made in case the vehicle is heading to Ladakh, Lahaul or Spiti. In which case, they will need to get permit from the Sub-Divisional Magistrates Office in Manali during working hours (10AM to 5PM, Monday to Saturday (barring second Saturdays and Government Holidays).
As per Himachal Government, this move comes amidst rising congestion en route to Rohtang Pass and accidents, which are primarily caused by vehicles from outside Himachal Pradesh. Ironically, Himachal Government has decided to take this decision, as the tourist season in Manali and other parts of Himachal Pradesh, comes to an end with the schools in North India, opening after month and a half long school vacations!
Of course as far as us travelers heading to Ladakh or Spiti are concerned, we would now have to either waste half a day or even a full day, to get the permit made or go through an agent, countless of whom are bound to come up, to take advantage of this situation and make a quick buck!
An update on the above situation, as per fellow BCMTian Vicky, he is heading to Ladakh and has gotten the permit for Rohtang Pass. Permit is not needed for two wheelers.