Friday, December 06, 2019

Posted at: Dec 3, 2019, 7:53 AM; last updated: Dec 3, 2019, 7:53 AM (IST)

HP in slow lane over FASTag deadline

Absence of toll plaza causes confusion among state transport dept, vehicle owners
HP in slow lane over FASTag deadline

Kuldeep Chauhan

Tribune News Service

Shimla, December 2

Thousands of vehicle owners, including taxi and bus operators, are not getting FASTag stickers in the state. None of companies, authorised to sell FASTags, has approached the State Transport Department for the opening of the sale counter to facilitate the applicants, officials said.

The vehicles owners, however, have heaved a sigh of relief as the Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways has extended the deadline for toll collection at toll plazas through FASTag stickers from December 1 to 15.

The department, however, is not taking the deadline seriously on the plea that there is no toll plaza on the national highways that run through the state.

The State Transport Department has not set up any public counter in the Regional Transport Office or state licensing authority (RTO—SLA). “No authorised company has approached the state transport office to open its sale outlet here for issuing FASTag stickers to the applicants,” official sources here said.

Private bus and taxi-operators said they crossed the toll plazas frequently, but they were not getting FASTag stickers in the state as the transport department is yet to take cognizance of the deadline. The department should start the sale of FASTag stickers at the RTO office, they demanded.

“When we approach the local bank branches, they express ignorance about the sale of FASTag stickers on the local RTOs plea that there is no toll plaza in the state,” said Sanjay Kumar, a transporter.

If the government wants to make the FASTag stickers compliance, it should start the sale counter on the highways to facilitate the transporters, he said. “Also, the banks should start issuing FASTags,” he added.

Transport Director Capt JM Pathania said they had not received any direction from the government so far as there is no toll plaza in the state. But the applicants can get the FASTag stickers online from the banks and at the toll plaza counters outside the state, he added.


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