FASTag not reading? Trip for free, says NHAI
NASHIK: With the mandatory implementation of FASTags from Wednesday (January 15), the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has clarified that passengers would be allowed to travel toll-free in case the FASTag is not properly read at toll plazas.
Mentioned in the National Highway Fee Determination of Rates and Collection Amendment Rule 2018, vehicles are allowed to travel toll-free if FASTag machines installed at toll plaza lanes fail to scan it, a notification said.
“Provided also that if a vehicle user with a valid, functional FASTag or any such device with sufficient balance in the linked account crossing a fee plaza installed with Electronic Toll Collection infrastructure, is not able to pay user fee through FASTag or any such device owing to malfunctioning of Electronic Toll Collection infrastructure, the vehicle user shall be permitted to pass the fee plaza without payment of any user fee.
An appropriate zero transaction receipt shall be issued mandatorily for all such transactions,” the notification reads. A FASTag is a prepaid rechargeable tag service that allows the driver to make automatic payment for tolls, without having to stop or wait in a queue.
This not only saves the time of the driver but also ensures that every vehicle that passes the toll is scanned and accounted for. An activated FASTag, installed on the car’s windshield, uses Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to communicate with the scanner which automatically deducts the amount from the user’s bank account.
They are issued by 22 certified banks and can be obtained from Points-of-Sale (POS) at toll plazas along the National Highway or select bank branches. Recently they were also made available on e-commerce platforms such as Amazon.
In order to make FASTag easier for customers, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) increased toll payment options by including Unified Payment Interface (UPI), cards, pre-paid instruments issued by non-banking finance companies (NBFCs).
All authorized payment systems and instruments have been permitted for linking with FASTags, the RBI said on December 30, adding that these could be used for making payments like vehicle toll, parking fees, etc.
As many as 1.10 crore FASTags have already been issued, data from NHAI showed. From December 15, NHAI started electronic toll collection on 523 toll plazas across the country.