Govt to amend rules for levying toll charges
The government on Monday said it would soon amend relevant rules that will allow collection of toll charges on highways only after their expansion is completed.
"The toll that is being charged from the date of awarding of contract for expansion of highways from four lanes to six lanes is being done as per the rules notified in 1997," Surface Transport Minister C P Joshi said replying to supplementaries in the Lok Sabha.
He said discrepancies in the rules notified in 1997 and 2008 were causing difficulties to motorists across the country.
The minister pointed out that the rules were cleared by Parliament which alone could set them right.
"We will soon move amendments to the rules. The matter would be referred to the Cabinet shortly," he said.
Joshi also assured the House that the hike in toll fees on roads which would be expanded from four lanes to six lanes would not be more than 25 per cent.
To questions from members, he said it was time they took a conscious decision on whether they were ready for public-private partnership model in construction of highways.
He said investments to the tune of Rs 80,000 crore have been made in the sector in the public-private partnership mode and 20,000 km of roads have been built through such initiatives.
To another question, Joshi said tractors have been exempted from paying toll tax and a waiver of 50 per cent tax has been extended to vehicles registered in district where the toll plaza is located.