No tags? Trucks, cabs to pay twice the toll
Just three days are left before all commercial vehicles entering and leaving the city will need to have radio frequency ID tags to go past the toll barriers.
NEW DELHI: Just three days are left before all commercial vehicles entering and leaving the city will need to have radio frequency ID tags to go past the toll barriers. Those that don’t will face the penalty of paying double the toll and environment compensation charges, the Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) said on Tuesday.
The RFID system will allow the automatic collection of toll tax and environment compensation charge from commercial vehicles entering the city.
In a meeting with police officers from Delhi and NCR, Delhi transport department and South Delhi Municipal Corporation, EPCA member Sunita Narain noted that only when a crackdown was initiated did the people take such initiatives seriously. “In the first week, the penal toll will be two times,” she said. “In the second, four times and in the third, six times. No commercial vehicles will be allowed into Delhi if they aren’t cashless and pre-registered.”
The expert panel had asked the authorities to make the system effective across 13 entry points into the city and had given them the deadline of August 15 to make the radio frequency-enabled border crossings operational for commercial vehicles. However, because of security issues on Independence Day, EPCA, on Tuesday, postponed the implementation by a day.
Police in NCR towns expressed concern about the August 15 deadline and apprehended that Delhi Police traffic restrictions for Independence Day could cause a border-area pile up. “It made sense to postpone the implementation by 24 hours,” agreed Narain. The RFID project, by phasing out cash transactions and human interaction, is meant to reduce the time spent at the toll plazas by vehicles.
EPCA chairman Bhure Lal instructed the Delhi transport department to deploy mobile teams on the borders. “Let’s use this opportunity to do maximum preregistration. Trucks will be parked on the road right outside the city. Send 12 teams to Haryana and deploy eight in Uttar Pradesh. This will ensure more vehicles get the RFID tags,” Lal said.
Narain added, “From 50% to 60% of incoming vehicles are expected not to have the required tags. South Delhi Municipal Corporation, the nodal agency for the project, should talk to the truck operators unions and take fresh steps to make them aware.”
Owners can install RFID tags in their commercial vehicles by paying Rs 235, an official said. The RFID system , inaugurated on July 15 by lieutenant governor Anil Baijal, , is functional at the border crossing at Kundli, Rajokri, Tikri, Aya Nagar, Kalindi Kunj, Kapashera, Shahdara (main), Shahdara (flyover), Ghazipur(old), DND flyway, Badarpur-Faridabad (main) and Badarpur-Faridabad (flyover). However, the cashless features are yet to be implemented. These points plus Ghazipur (main) account for almost 85% of the truck and commercial vehicle volume at the borders. During the meeting on Tuesday, the RFID concessionaire disclosed that over 70,000 tags had been sold till date.
A transport department official said there were six points before entering Delhi where vehicles could get these tags. “These facilities are at Manesar Sector 1 near the police station, Tikri Bahadurgarh new bus stand, Biswa Mill Chowk at Kondli, National Highway 1 near the Indian Oil petrol pump, Mohan Nagar, ITS Colleege in Ghaziabad, NH24 bridge, UP Gate in Ghaziabad and the NHAI Badarpur toll plaza (for outgoing vehicles).”