FASTags mandatory from January 1, Govt clarifies only hybrid lanes will accept cash till Feb 15 – india news

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FASTags will be mandatory for all vehicles with effect from January 1, 2021, in M and N categories of motor vehicles sold before December 1, 2017, the ministry of street transport and Highways elucidated on Thursday adding that only a unmarried hybrid lane will be functional at tolls for accepting cash till February 15.

Category ‘M’ stands for a motor vehicle with a minimum of four wheels used for carrying passengers. Category ‘N’ stands for a motor vehicle with a minimum of four wheels used for carrying goods, which may additionally carry people along with goods.

“It is elucidated that this Central Motor Vehicle Rule stands in force as it is,” said the ministry in an official remark on Thursday.

Alternatively, at hybrid lanes of fee plazas on National Highways, fee payment can also be made through FASTag in addition to in cash mode till February 15, 2021. In addition, in FASTag lanes of fee plazas, payment of fees will continue to be through FASTag only.

“The Ministry has elucidated that it is dedicated to implementation of 100% E-tolling at fee plazas from 1st January, 2021 onwards, mandated under CMV Rules, as amended,” it said in the remark.

Electronic toll collection through FASTags has crossed Rs 80 crore a day with record 50 lakh transactions per day with more than 2.20 crore FaSTags issued thus far , the National Highways Authority of India had said final week.

FASTag, a radio frequency identification (RFID) sticker most often constant to a vehicle’s windscreen, lets toll booths wirelessly and automatically deduct the fee, thereby not requiring a vehicle to stop. The tags were made mandatory for all new cars sold after December 1, 2017, as a measure to encourage digital payments and free up congestion at toll booths.

In a move aimed to give a major fillip to fortify digital payments and minimize bottlenecks at national highways, the Centre had mandated that every one lanes of national highways toll plazas to be declared as “FASTag lanes” by December, 2019.

Speaking at a virtual summit final week, Union street transport minister Nitin Gadkari had said that the electronic toll collection system was once useful for commuters as they would not be required to stop at toll plaza for cash payments, adding that it also saves time and fuel. Making FASTags obligatory would also make certain that vehicles pass seamlessly through toll plazas as payment would be done on an electronic basis.

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