In other countries, GPS devices have been used for the last two decades by the supply chain industry to improve operational efficiencies. India has been a slow follower. But the govt is finally trying hard to play catch-up, & it is imperative that this endeavour is successful. Ensuring success, however, is very challenging. A change in perspective could make all the difference.
UP already has the longest expressway in the country — linking Delhi to Lucknow via the connected Yamuna Expressway and Lucknow Expressway, helping motorists cover the 500-km stretch in about 6 hours. Four more expressway stretches are coming up. In January, PM Narendra Modi will lay the foundation of the Bundelkhand Expressway. The 296-km expressway will connect Chitrakoot with the Agra-Lucknow Expressway near Bateshwar, thus offering a smooth six-lane drive from Delhi till the southern point of Uttar Pradesh. In November, the UP government finalised the alignment of India’s proposed longest Ganga Expressway. The 628-km e-way will connect Delhi and Allahabad via Meerut. (Representative Image)
The crisis in Telangana is a reflection of the precarious position of state-run bus operators in India, which have seen their losses swell every passing year. This is particularly worrying since buses undergird India’s public transport system, and cash-starved state governments and municipal corporations have done little to shore up the transport corps.
The government wants to give additional time for vehicle owners to switch to FASTags, senior officials aware of the development told ET. . Vehicles without FASTags entering the ETC lane will have to incur twice the toll fee December 15 onwards, NHAI said.
According to BullEye Technologies, the transition to 100 per cent FASTag-based toll collection on national highways from 1st December could save up to Rs 12,000 crore worth of fuel and man-hours in India.
The service provider will also have to set up a system to resolve customer complaints or queries online. Only owners of cars, utility vehicles, vans and other light motor vehicles will be allowed to buy FASTags online. It has been specified in the bid document that the service provider shall not sell FASTags “in bulk to any single customer or a group of customers.”
Truck owners can order FASTags on BlackBuck's Boss App, a digital services platform exclusively for truck fleet owners, and it will be delivered at their doorstep free of cost until December 31, 2019, the company said in a statement.
According to the earlier model approved by the government in 2016, NHAI could monetise publicly funded highways by offering investors toll collection rights for 30 years for a lumpsum amount. “With this flexibility, we now get a larger pool of road stretches to choose from,” a senior government official told ET.
“NHAI has set up point of sale (PoS) on several toll plazas across the country, and they are giving out FASTags free of cost,” said minister for road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari. The government has set December 1 as the deadline to switch all toll lanes to electronic toll collection.
As per information available in the database of the National Informatics Centre (NIC), 38,39,406 traffic challans in 18 states were issued since September 1. The Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019 made with the intention of disciplining road users resulted in increase of traffic penalties by several times.
To fast track the lagging projects, various steps such as streamlining of land acquisition and environmental clearances, close coordination with other ministries, revamping dispute resolution mechanism, and frequent review meetings with project developers, state governments and contractors have been taken up, said Nitin Gadkari.
The road transport and highways ministry had earlier this year announced December 1 as the deadline to switch all toll lanes across national highways in the country to electronic toll collection (ETC). “NHAI has set up point of sale (PoS) on several toll plazas across the country, and they are giving out FASTags free of cost,” Nitin Gadkari said.
Among key changes, the NHAI has been allowed to vary the concession period of toll projects between 15 to 30 years. TOT was introduced in 2016 to monetise publicly funded highways. Under the model, investors make a one-time lump sum payment in return for long-term toll collection rights of 30 years.