Government suspends toll charges on national highways

New Delhi, Nov 9 (IANS) Reversing its earlier decision, the government on Wednesday suspended fee collection at all toll plazas on national highways till the midnight of November 11.

However, on Wednesday afternoon, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways had allowed toll plazas’ operators to accept the demonetised currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 till the midnight of November 11.

“The government has decided to suspend payment of fees at toll plazas on all national highways till the midnight of 11.11.2016,” the ministry said in a statement.

“Instructions in this regard are being issued to all the concessionaires including BOT (build-operate-transfer), OMT (operate-maintain-transfer) operators and other fee collection agencies.”

The ministry elaborated that the decision has been taken in order to avoid any inconvenience to highway users post the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.

The earlier decision to allow toll plazas’ operators to accept the demonetised currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denomination was seen to be in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement that hospitals, railway, bus and airlines ticket counters will continue to accept Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes for the next 72 hours.

Modi had announced these measures to smoothen the transition process of demonetisation for curbing black money in the country.

According to government official, massive traffic jams due to lack of lower denomination currency notes with users and operators led the government to review its earlier decision.

–IANS

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