To ensure seamless traffic, the government is working to ensure that all fee plazas on National Highways (NH) have operational fast tag lanes within six months, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari said today. During the Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha, the minister was asked as to when fast tag lanes would become operational as often toll collection inconvenienced consumers. "There are 479 fee plazas operational on National Highways (NHs) across the country. 'FASTag' lanes have been made operational at 409 fee plazas," Gadkari said. The work on installation of requisite infrastructure on the balance toll plazas is proposed to be completed during the current year, he said.
Giving details about Rajasthan, Gadkari said out of the 69 fee plazas, FASTag lanes were operation in 48. Some members also expressed concern over inconvenience faced by MPs at toll barriers. Gadkari said parliamentarians were given two cards which facilitate free vehicular movement - one in New Delhi, and another in their constituency. He said but it was only for two vehicles and not for the entire entourage of a Member of Parliament. He mentioned that after restrictions on the use of beacons were imposed, at many places the toll collection went up. A member suggested that no toll should be charged as such a step will be lauded by the people.
Gadkari said if services have to be availed, a price has to be paid. He said the funds to build roads were gathered from toll and there was no other option. The member suggested the GST collected on toll should be brought down to 15 from 18 per cent, to which Gadkari replied the matter was being discussed with the Finance Ministry.