India

Parliament proceedings | Gadkari promises to eliminate toll plazas on National Highways

Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari at Parliament House on August 3, 2022.

Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari at Parliament House on August 3, 2022. | Photo Credit: PTI

The government is working on a toll collection system that will eliminate toll plazas from the country and bring relief from long queues for road users in the next six months, Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari said in Parliament, on Wednesday.

“We have FASTags, but now we are searching for new options such as satellite-based toll system which will go through the GPS system installed in a car, debit the toll amount from the bank account. The second option is number plate, which will have a computerised system for collecting toll. Such a system will collect toll for the actual distance travelled on a National Highway,” Mr. Gadkari said in Rajya Sabha.

Better technology

The Minister said that a final decision had not yet been taken on which of the two technologies was better, but his personal opinion favoured the number-plate based system. He said the technology will be finalised in a month.

“There will be no toll plaza. It will be a sophisticated, digitised system by which we can give relief. No queue, no toll plaza, no people,” Mr. Gadkari said.

In order to implement such a system the government will have to also introduce a Bill in Parliament to enforce penalties when road users fail to pay toll, the Minister said. He said he will try his best to implement the system in the next six months.

Defending the FASTag

Mr. Gadkari also at the same time, defended the FASTag-based toll collection system which uses RFID for toll collection despite concerns that it had not led to reduction in queues at toll plazas. He said FASTags had resulted in an increase in revenue from toll for the National Highways Authority of India, which was now at ₹120 crore per day and a total of 5.56 crore FASTags had been issued, resulting in a market penetration of 97%.

Satellite-based toll system

“We have FASTags, but now we are searching for new options such as satellite-based toll system which will go through the GPS system installed in a car and debit the toll amount from the bank account. The second option is number plate, which will have a computerised system for collecting toll. Such a system will collect toll for the actual distance travelled on a National Highway,” Mr. Gadkari said in Rajya Sabha.

The Minister said that a final decision had not yet been taken on which of the two technologies was better, but his personal opinion favoured the number-plate based system. He said the technology will be finalised in a month.

“There will be no toll plaza. It will be a sophisticated, digitised system by which we can give relief. No queue, no toll plaza, no people,” Mr. Gadkari said.

In order to implement such a system the government will have to also introduce a Bill in Parliament to enforce penalties when road users fail to pay toll, the Minister said. He said he will try his best to implement the system in the next six months.

Increase in revenue

Mr. Gadkari also at the same time, defended the FASTag-based toll collection system which uses RFID for toll collection despite concerns that it had not led to reduction in queues at toll plazas. He said FASTags had resulted in an increase in revenue from toll for the National Highways Authority of India which was now at ₹120 crore per day and a total of 5.56 crore FASTags had been issued resulting in a market penetration of 97%. 

“It will be a sophisticated, digitised system by which we can give relief”Nitin Gadkari Minister for Road Transport and Highways


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Printable version | Aug 4, 2022 1:43:07 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/parliament-proceedings-gadkari-promises-to-eliminate-toll-plazas-on-national-highways/article65722516.ece