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Opinion

Mandatory FASTags from January 1, the government clarifies that only hybrid lanes will accept cash until February 15

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FASTags will be mandatory for all vehicles from January 1, 2021, in the M and N categories of motor vehicles sold before December 1, 2017, the Ministry of Road and Highways Transport clarified on Thursday, adding that only a hybrid lane will be functional. in tolls for accepting cash until February 15.

Category “M” means a motor vehicle with at least four wheels used to transport passengers. Category ‘N’ means a motor vehicle with at least four wheels used to transport goods, which can also carry people in addition to goods.

“It is clarified that this Central Motor Vehicle Standard remains in force as is,” the ministry said in an official statement Thursday.

However, in the hybrid lanes of the fare squares on national highways, the payment of fares can be made through FASTag, as well as in effective mode until February 15, 2021. In addition, in the FASTag lanes of the fare places, the payment of the fares will remain only through FASTag. .

“The Ministry has clarified that it is committed to the implementation of 100% electronic tolls in payment plazas from January 1, 2021 onwards, as stipulated in the CMV Rules, as amended,” he said in the statement.

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

FASTag, a radio frequency identification (RFID) sticker that is typically affixed to the windshield of a vehicle, allows toll booths to wirelessly and automatically deduct the fee, thus not requiring the 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 intended to provide a major push to improve digital payments and reduce bottlenecks on national highways, the Center had mandated that all toll plaza lanes on national highways be declared “FASTag lanes” for December 2019.

Speaking at a virtual summit last week, the Union’s road transport minister, Nitin Gadkari, said that the electronic toll collection system was useful for travelers as they would not have to stop at the toll plaza for payments. cash, adding that it also saves time and fuel. Making FASTags mandatory would also ensure that vehicles pass smoothly through toll plazas, as payment would be made electronically.

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