Over 3 Crore Vehicles Now Have FASTags; Rs 100 Crore/Day Collection Recorded Across India
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) had on February 15, 2021 midnight, put into effect compulsory installation of radio frequency identification (RFID) stickers called FASTag on all four wheeler vehicles sold before December 1, 2017.
This means that no four-wheeler vehicle, post the mentioned date will now be allowed to pay cash on highway fee plazas at the nominal rates, shall they choose to pay the fee via cash.
The Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari informed the Parliament on Monday that the average collection of daily toll through FASTag has crossed the Rs 100 crore mark, per day.
FASTag Toll Collection Crosses Rs 100 Crore a Day
According to Gadkari, “As on 16th March 2021, more than 3 crore FASTags have been issued. The average daily fee collection through FASTag is more than Rupees 100 crores from 1st March 2021 to 16th March 2021.”
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) had notified all four-wheelers on Indian roads to compulsorily have FASTags, effective January 1st, 2021.
It also stated, “making FASTag mandatory to be available by January 1, 2021 in old vehicles also i.e. M and N category of motor vehicles (four wheelers) sold before December 1, 2017 through amendments in CMVR, 1989?.
On February 15, 2021 midnight, the ministry finalised the extended deadline for all four-wheelers on Indian roads to compulsorily switch to FASTags.
There has been a 100% shift towards collection of toll charges on national highways through FASTag, with a fee charged twice the nominal price, if the rider chooses to pay via cash.
Category ‘M’ means all vehicles with at least four wheels used for the carrying passengers, while ‘N’ vehicles having at least four wheels used for the carrying goods which may also carry persons in addition to the goods subject to conditions.
The MoRTH stated, “As per NH Fee Rules 2008, any vehicle not fitted with FASTag or vehicle without valid, functional FASTag entering into the FASTag lane of the fee plaza shall pay a fee equivalent to two times of the fee applicable to that category.”
The ministry has clarified that doing so would promote fee payment through digital mode, reduce waiting time and fuel consumption, and provide for a seamless passage through the fee plazas.
The ministry was to make this transition by January 1, 2021.
However, due to a large population of motorists continuing to use cash to pay toll taxes on highways, the Ministry decided to extend the deadline to Feb 15.
FASTags, introduced in 2016, have prepaid RFID tags, which are used to automatically deduct toll plaza charges from the car, and there is no need to stop the car and make the payment, thereby saving fuel and making the process seamless.