The opposition, in the Question Hour session of Parliament, had expressed concern over setting up of toll plazas on expressways within city limits, forcing the local population to pay tolls even if they entered the city. In response, Nitin Gadkari said that he is the father of toll tax system in India.
Nitin Gadkari while answering some questions in the question session said that he is aware of this problem and it will be resolved. Gadkari blamed the previous government for this and said that this problem had arisen during the UPA regime.
Let us tell you that the work of Nitin Gadkari has been praised many times by opposition parties. He said that before 2014 when the UPA government was there, toll was levied near the city and everyone had to pay it. “It’s very unfortunate and illegal.”
Gadkari said in his reply that it is fortunate or unfortunate that I am the father of this toll system, because for the first time in this country I started the toll system and the first project of BOT (Build-Operate-Transfer) was started in Thane in Maharashtra. Had it.
Gadkari took over the Mumbai-Pune Expressway project, the first of its kind, when he was the PWD minister in the Maharashtra government between 1995 and 1999. The minister said that soon a new system is going to start under which toll plazas will be removed from such areas and no fee will be levied on the people.
Gadkari said that often the people of the city use only 10 km of the expressway road and are charged 75 km toll. Allaying the concerns of the members, he said, “This is absolutely wrong. But this is not my problem and it happened during the previous government. We will rectify it.”
Let us tell you that FASTag based toll collection has increased by 67% in the country. In the last financial year (2021-2022), the total toll collection in the country was Rs 38,084 crore. FASTag is used to collect toll on National Highways and some State Highways where it has been implemented.
The Center had declared all toll plazas on national highways as FASTag lanes with effect from the midnight of February 16, 2021. On National Highways, 96.5% of vehicles are now using FASTag. Around 964 FASTag based toll plazas are active across the country.