Newdelhi:14/10/19:Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Shri Nitin Gadkari inaugurated a conference on ‘One Nation One Tag – FASTag’ in New Delhi today, to roll out the process for having a unified electronic system across the country. The Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways Gen. (Retd.) V.K Singh and ministers and senior officials from several states were also present on the occasion.
Under the National Electronic Toll Collection programme of the Ministry, toll collection at national highways toll plazas is done through RFID based FASTags. However, collection at state highways toll plazas is done either manually or through other tags. This leads to inconvenience for the road users. The Ministry is therefore encouraging states to come onboard FASTag, so that seamless movement of transport can be assured across the nation. For this, Scheme Guidelines for Inclusion of Sate/ City Toll Plaza under NETC programme (FASTag) was circulated to all states by Indian Highways Management Corp Ltd (IHMCL). The Scheme offers participating state authorities/agencies shorter turnaround time by allowing them to be a part of the robust FASTag solution architecture which already supports approx. 6 million tags with approximately daily 10 lakh transactions. Under the scheme IHMCL is providing financial assistance for 50% of the CAPEX cost of installation of ETC infrastructure at two lanes on each toll plaza subject to a maximum of Rs 20 lakh and also bear part of the ETC programme management fee.
IHMCL exchanged MoUs with several states/ authorities for integrating with FASTag today. The move assumes special significance due to the fact that from 1st of December this year, toll collections on all National Highways will mandatorily be done through FASTag only.
Another MoU was signed today – between IHMCL and GST Network (GSTN) for integrating E-Way Bill system with FASTag. This has been done with a view to overcoming the existing challenge in track and trace mechanism for GST E-Way Bill (EWB) System and enhance the efficiency in its monitoring. This integration would become mandatory on an all India basis from April 2020. This will allow for more efficient track and trace system for the GST E-Way Bill System, and check the leakage of revenue at the toll plazas. With this integration revenue authorities will be able to track the goods vehicles to see whether they are actually travelling to the specified destination. The supplier/ transporter will also be able to track their vehicles through SMS alerts generated at each toll plaza.
Speaking on the occasion, Shri Gadkari said that Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has been giving a lot of emphasis on large scale transport reforms. He said the unified and nation-wide inter-operable RFID-based tag for vehicles is a major step in this direction. Under this system the same FASTag affixed on the windscreen of a vehicle can be used to pay toll across all toll plazas in the country. This initiative will remove bottlenecks and ensure seamless movement of traffic and efficient collection of user fee. He said, this is likely to reduce the nation’s GDP loss by bringing down loss of fuel while waiting at toll plazas. This measure is both time saving, as also controls pollution substantially. The Minister announced that very soon, nobody will be required to wait at toll plazas anywhere in the country.
The Minister further said that efforts are being carried out to enable usage of FASTag for making various vehicle related payments apart from toll payments, such as fuel payment, parking charges, etc. He said that the FASTag is being positioned as the ‘Aadhaar’ for a vehicle.