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FASTAG MANDATORY FOR ALL VEHICLES

What’s in news?

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has decided to declare all lanes in all toll fee plazas on national highways across the country as dedicated ‘FASTag lanes’ from 1st of December this year.

Back ground:

  • Over 52 lakh FASTags have been issued till date.
  • FASTags are being issued by 22 certified banks through various channels such as Point-of-Sale at NH toll plazas and selected bank branches. 
  • According to the National Highways Fee (Determination of Rates and Collection) Rules, 2008, a FASTag lane in a toll plaza is reserved exclusively for the movement of FASTag users.

Key data:

  • Electronic toll collection tags known as FASTags will be made mandatory on every toll paying vehicle in four months in an effort to unclog toll plazas
  • All toll collection centres, which number more than 500 in the country, will be converted to accept FASTags, 
  • Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MORTH) and Department of Heavy Industries (DHI) will explore a pilot project of converting a 10 km highway stretch into an electric highway complete with overhead power cables akin to the railways.
  • Heavy trucks can run at a maximum speed of 100 km per hour on this track, which will be set up at a cost of Rs 200 crore.
  • The power lines will also power the batteries of the trucks, which will also run on diesel thus making it a hybrid vehicle.
  • This idea derived from 3.1 mile stretch of the Autobahn – one of world’s most famous freeways in Germany – where diesel electric hybrid trucks receive power from overhead cables using a pantograph.
  • Among all lanes, one ‘hybrid lane’ will be allowed at every toll plaza to facilitate and monitor over-dimensional or oversized vehicles, where FASTag and other modes of payment will be accepted.
  • This lane will also be converted into FASTag-only lane in a time-bound manner.
  • After December 1, non-FASTag users will be charged double the fee if they pass through FASTag-only lanes.

Fast tag:

  • It is a device that uses Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology for making toll payments directly from the prepaid account linked to it.
  • It is affixed on the windscreen of vehicle and enables to drive through toll plazas without waiting.
  • The tag has a validity of 5 years and after purchase, it only needs to be recharged or topped up.

Mobile apps – MyFASTag and FASTag Partner:

  • MyFASTag is a consumer app.
  • A consumer can purchase or recharge FASTags on this app, which also helps keep track of transactions and provides for online grievance redressal.
  • FASTag Partner is a merchant app.

 

Links to note:

https://www.iasipstnpsc.in/chardham-project/

https://www.businesstoday.in/sectors/infra/govt-pushes-for-e-tolling-fastags-to-be-made-mandatory-from-december-1/story/366046.html

https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/technology/auto/fastags-to-be-made-mandatory-for-every-vehicle-in-4-months-nitin-gadkari-4213561.html

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