New buses, trucks to sport Fastags from December 1

Mamuni Das New Delhi | Updated on January 09, 2018 Published on November 24, 2017

Unique identity A car with a Fastag passes through the electronic toll collection lane at a toll plaza on the Salem- Bengaluru National Highway   -  E_Lakshmi narayanan;E_Lakshmi narayanan

The move will help vehicles pass through toll plazas by making payments electronically

All vehicles with four or more wheels — including trucks and buses — sold from December 1, will have to be fitted with Fastags or RFID tags, which are likely to emerge as unique identity numbers for vehicles, quite like Aadhaar, said a source.

Earlier, some stakeholders believed that the notification regarding compulsory Fastags was only for four-wheelers.

A large number of trucks are sold only with chassis, as buyers prefer to fit the truck bodies outside to control costs. “Some trucks are sold with the entire body, while some others are sold with chassis only — without the windshields. In those trucks, the dealers will have to attach the tags before selling,” said a source, requesting anonymity.

The move will help proliferate Fastags use, which will enable users to zoom through toll plazas on national highways by making payments electronically.

The tags, each of which has a unique identification number, store data such as vehicle registration and class of vehicle, which help arrive at the exact toll to be charged. They have encrypted vehicle data such as engine and chassis number. These are also enabled to store other vehicle compliance-related data, including those related to emissions or pollution and insurance.

As of now, 7.5 lakh such tags have been fixed on vehicles. Of the ₹50-crore toll collected everyday, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) collects about ₹10 crore through Fastags, reflecting about a fifth of total toll revenue collected through tags. The tags were adopted at a faster rate after the demonetisation move of the government in November last year.

Payment for toll through Fastags can be made online through PayTm, Equitas Small Finance Bank, ICICI, IDBI, Axis Bank and SBI. An amount of up to ₹1 lakh can be loaded onto the Fastags.

Indian Highways Management Company Ltd, in which NHAI has a stake, is enabling all its toll plazas with electronic readers, a move that will help prevent toll revenue losses. The card readers — when installed in cities — can help implement multiple services for enforcement agencies.

Published on November 24, 2017
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