India / India will be free of toll barriers in two years' time: Nitin Gadkari

Zoom News : Dec 18, 2020, 08:02 AM
New Delhi: The Union road transport and highways ministry has finalized a global positioning system (GPS)- based toll collection system to ensure seamless movement of vehicles across the country.

Toll barriers will cease to exist in the country when this is implemented within the next two years, road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari said. The toll amount will be deducted directly from the bank account based on the movement of vehicles.

“We have finalized a GPS system with the help of the Russian government. In two years, India will be toll naka mukt," Gadkari said at an event to commemorate the Assocham Foundation Week on Thursday.

All commercial vehicles being manufactured nowadays have vehicle tracking systems and the government will come up with a mechanism to install GPS technology in older vehicles, the minister said.

As a result of the initiative, the National Highways Authority of India’s (NHAI’s) toll income could rise to ₹1.34 trillion in five years using GPS technology. “Yesterday, there was a presentation in the presence of the secretary, road transport and highways, and chairman, NHAI. By using GPS technology for toll collection we expect that our toll income in next five years will be ₹1,34,000 crore," the minister said. Gadkari said he expects the toll collections to reach ₹34,000 crore in this fiscal.

The central government has been taking steps to enable seamless movement of vehicles across the country. Over the last one year, the Centre has been aggressively pushing the mandatory use of FASTag at national highways to reduce traffic congestion at toll plazas and unnecessary fuel consumption, thereby curbing pollution. Use of electronic toll collecting device also enables cashless transactions, making toll collection transparent and helping the government plug revenue leakages.

The use of FASTag has picked up significantly in the last few months. This now accounts for nearly three-fourth of the total toll collection and has increased the total collection to ₹92 crore per day from ₹70 crore per day a year ago, according to the NHAI statement in November.