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FASTAG IS COMPULSORY ON NATIONAL HIGHWAY

Updated: Feb 6

By

Amit sheoran, I year of B.A.,LL.B, from Symbiosis Law School, Nagpur


Introduction:

Fastag was launched by the National Highway Authority of India. It became mandatory since January 2020 by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highway for all the four-wheelers vehicles. It is considered as one of the most important steps raised by the government of India to make India digitally successful. Its main aim is to stop corruption and maintain the speed of vehicles by removing bottlenecks and collect tolls electronically. It will reduce the crime level that is increasing day by day. It will keep surveillance on every activity that happens at the toll plaza by cameras.


Fastag and its working:

Now the questions arise: what is fastag? And how does it work? The answer is quite simple, Fastag is a device that works based on radio frequency identification technology, it collects toll directly from the account of the person who is linked with fastag. It is the initiative of the Ministry of road transport and highway to collect tolls directly by the National Electronic Toll Collection program. It has been implemented on a Pan basis to remove corruption and bottleneck of traffic. If the tag is linked with a prepaid account like a debit/ credit card, then owners need to recharge. Once a vehicle crosses the toll plaza, the owner will get an automatic SMS alert on the alert of deduction of money from the account. There will be one hybrid lane that will continue to accept the cash in addition to being enabled. If anyone without having Fastag and tries to go through the fastag hybrid line will have to pay double the amount of toll tax. It will play a very important role on the national highway, and it will act as a true friend of govt. in reducing corruption and stop/ reduce traffic pollution. It will work in the same way as the radio work by using frequencies. It is considered that fastag will be enabled to read the barcode that will be on the screen of moving vehicles. One of the amazing things is that more than 12.5 million people started to use fastag before the end of December 2019. The road transport and highway ministry make it mandatory that all commercial, as well as private four-wheeler vehicles, install the fastag card before 15 January 2020.


Benefits of fastag:

Various benefits of fastag on the national highway are given as follows:-

  • It reduces the traveling time because after using fasting people need not stop their vehicle at the toll and can move at the same speed to reach their destination.

  • It is very easy to pay. There is no need to wait in line and no hard procedure required to pay, it will automatically deduct the tax when the vehicle crosses the toll plaza. It is very easy to recharge by reloading cash in fastag by using debit/ credit card, NEFT, RTGS, etc.

  • It saves fuel to a large extent.

  • SMS aleat available facility for low balance and also toll transaction.

  • It is an online portal and will help in making Digital India successful.

  • It will create better highway management and reduced efforts in managing toll plaza. It has a low operating cost and also has better audit control by using central accounts.

  • It will surely improve the transparency of toll transactions and also it will be proved environmentally friendly by reducing pollution and saving fuel.

  • It has a camera attached to the toll plaza that will inform the concerned authority in case of any violation of traffic rules and also help in preventing crime and tax evasion cases.


After seeing all the benefits, we can see fastag is very important on the various highway. It will be eco-friendly and help in maintaining traffic rules and stop crime. It is easy to handle and has its tagline “Easy to Cruise” In this way, we can say that having fastag is to be compulsory on the national highway.


Disadvantages of fastag:

  • Local people have to need to keep monthly passes. If the pass is removed, it creates a problem for them and they will not be able to go to their destination.

  • It will be possible to locate the tracking of vehicles by agencies that store fastag data.

  • State highway doesn’t accept the fastag till now. They have yet to accept it.

  • Vehicles entering in fastag lanes that do not have fastag will have to pay twice the total amount of toll.

  • Different banks have different costs for fast cards. Banks are not neutral and do not have the same charge for fastag.

  • It may be possible for persons with malicious intent to use an RFID Scanner to obtain sensitive information about vehicle owners from the tag that is pasted on the parked car and this information can be used for crimes. It affects somewhere the security of citizens.


Documents required for application for fastag:

  • Identity proof

  • Residential proof

  • The KYC documents vary from bank to bank

  • Registration certificate of Vehicle

  • Passport size photo


Methods of payment by fastag:

  • Issuance fee

  • Refundable security deposit

The minimum amount which we need to credit or debit to our digital wallet that is linked with fastag.


Conclusion:

Fastag is the initiative started by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highway. It is considered a big step for making India digitally successful. It will help to reduce the bottleneck of the vehicle at the toll plaza. It also increases the speed of collecting tax from the toll plazas. It reduces the corruption that is caused at the toll plaza because when the toll is deducted online, it will directly transfer into the govt. account. Fastag has various benefits as well as limitations. It reduces the pollution and saves fuel in a large amount. But it also creates a threat to the personal security of individuals. It can trace the location of any individual and identify him. One of the biggest limitations is that if any person without fastag mistakenly enters the lane fastag, he will have to pay twice the amount. One of the questions that are unanswered till now is that Why the state govt. not accept the fastag till now? It is marked mandatory for all commercial vehicles from 15 January 2020. I hope it will start to work smoothly soon and also help in the campaign of digital India to make it successful.