The Ministry of Road Transport on Sunday extended the last day for all highway lanes in Telangana to be converted to FASTag lanes to January 15, but all 17 toll plazas in Telangana completed the switch to FASTag toll collection from Saturday midnight. Currently, one lane in each toll plaza will be accepting cash payments and all other lanes would be FASTtag lanes.
Earlier, the ministry had set December 15 as the last date for the compulsory implementation of FASTags on National Highway Toll Plazas across the country.
The relaxation until January 15 will mean that all lanes in the highway will be on FASTag, expect one lane. The ministry says this is being done as a measure to reduce the difficulty for commuters at the toll gates.
Any vehicle user is found crossing the toll gates without FASTag will be fined with a penalty equivalent to the toll fee, informed Krishana Prasad, General Manager Regional Office, Telangana National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) to The Hindu.
The NHAI in Telangana will also be deploying marshals at the toll gates to help guide vehicle users. The FASTag vehicles would be guided to dedicated lanes while those without RFID tags will be diverted to the non-FASTag lane.
So far, a total of 52,549 FASTags have been issued in Telangana until Saturday. The NHAI has set up a total of 104 sale counters at toll plazas. About 15,000 of these tags were bought in the last week alone. So far about 40% of the transactions at the toll plazas are through FASTags, reported ToI and these figures are set to increase in the coming weeks.
The FASTag initiative under the National Electronic Toll Collection programme (NETC) is being implemented to save fuel, time and pollution and to ensure seamless movement of traffic.