Fastag hits slow lane on Day 1

Govt eases norms till Jan 15, silent on levying double toll

Fastag hits slow lane on Day 1

Long queues of vehicles at Ladhowal toll plaza on Sunday. Tribune photo: Himanshu Mahajan

Vijay C Roy

Tribune News Service

Hiccups at plazas

  • 1 km-long queues at Ladhowal toll plaza in Ludhiana

  • Glitches in scanning caused delay at toll plazas

  • Manual scanners used after overhead scanners failed

  • Insufficient wallet balance slowed down movement

Chandigarh, December 15

Amid confusion among commuters, the national highways across Punjab allowed vehicles without tags to enter the FASTag-only lanes and didn’t charge double toll tax on the first day of its implementation. There are 19 toll plazas in the state.

The highway operators said they had taken the decision to avoid chaos as people were under the impression that the new rules would come into effect from December 16.

While the government, in a notification, has given relief to the commuters for the next one month (till January 15) to procure tags in view of its scarcity, it is silent on charges. As a result, commuters could be charged double the toll if they passed through FASTag lanes from Monday.

“People entering FASTag-only lanes started arguing, saying the operators could only levy the double toll from tomorrow, not today. So, we let them through to avoid any unsavoury situation,” said a senior executive at the Dappar toll plaza.

To-do list for motorists

  • Don’t paste tags on extreme left/right of windscreen

  • Tags need to be on upper middle part of windscreen

  • If scan unsuccessful, reposition vehicle under scanner

  • Use wiper to clear dust on windscreen for easy scan

According to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways guidelines, FASTag was made mandatory for all vehicles, private or commercial, from December 15. However, commuters who did not have the tag were supposed to be charged double the toll if they used FASTag-only lanes.

Toll operators maintained people entering the FASTag-only lanes and who were willing to pay double the toll might be charged accordingly from tomorrow. “We will assess the law and order situation, depending upon which we will decide on levying double toll,” said another executive.

Meanwhile, the ministry has asked the National Highways Authority of India to increase the number of toll lanes where cash payment would be accepted till January 15, provided the number isn’t more than one-fourth the total toll counters.

Earlier, the ministry had said vehicles without tags won’t be allowed to enter the FASTag lanes and there would be only one lane on each side for accepting cash.

However, due to shortage of FASTag, the ministry eased the norm and said at least 75% of lanes at toll plazas on national highways must have electronic toll collection.

The government had initially said no vehicle would be allowed to pass through toll plazas without a FASTag from December 1. Later, it said there would be one ‘hybrid’ lane at every toll plaza where cash payment would also be accepted.

Top Stories

Mumbai escapes Cyclone Nisarga’s fury; no loss of life reported in Maharashtra

Mumbai escapes Cyclone Nisarga’s fury; no loss of life reported in Maharashtra

60,000 evacuees to return home by Thursday morning

Cabinet approves amendment to Essential Commodities Act

Cabinet approves amendment to Essential Commodities Act

Brings Ordinance to promote barrier-free interstate, intra-s...

China preparing for infiltration behind enemy lines amidst standoff in Ladakh

China preparing for infiltration behind enemy lines amidst standoff in Ladakh

Media reports emanating from China indicate that PLA troops ...

Pregnant wild elephant in Kerala dies after cracker-filled pineapple explodes in her mouth

Pregnant wild elephant in Kerala dies after cracker-filled pineapple explodes in her mouth

The incident was reported from the fringe areas of the Silen...

3 militants including top Jaish commander killed in Pulwama

3 militants including top Jaish commander killed in Pulwama

Abdul Rehman alias Fauji Bhai of Multan in Pakistan was behi...

Cities

View All