The Surathkal Tollgate Virodhi Horata Samiti will participate in the protest against the merger of user fee payable at NITK-Surathkal toll plaza with that of Hejmady toll plaza on NH 66 from December 2.
Samiti convener Muneer Katipalla in a statement here said the samiti has decided to continue the struggle against ‘illegal’ toll collection at Hejmady after winding up its month-long indefinite dharna at Surathkal on December 1.
The Central government’s decision to merge Surathkal plaza with Hejmady was anti-people and betrayal of trust of the residents of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts. People’s representatives from the two districts were solely responsible for this unfortunate situation, said Mr. Katpalla.
The samiti will participate in the struggle demanding rolling back of the user fee at Hejmady plaza along with like-minded organisations from December 2. The struggle will commence with a mass dharna at Hejmady, he said, urging people to participate in the movement in large numbers.
Meanwhile, the samiti will wind up the month-long indefinite dharna that started on October 28 against the Surathkal plaza on December 1, after the Dakshina Kannada district administration ordered there would be no toll collection at Surathkal from that date.
The samiti for the last six years had been fighting against the ‘illegal’ plaza that was established as a temporary one in December 2015. It intensified the struggle in 2022 and resorted to indefinite dharna form October 28 that it would not go back until toll collection was stopped at Surathkal, Mr. Katipalla said.
Responding to the intense pressure built by residents of the twin districts, the Union government has ordered closure of the plaza from December 1, he said terming it the victory of the common man.
The valedictory function of the indefinite dharna will be held at 4 p.m. on December 1 near the Surathkal toll plaza, he added.