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NHAI will recommence the collection of toll tax on national highways from April 20

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) have made a revised list of activities which have been permitted amidst the lockdown. Due to corona virus outbreak many sectors were temporarily ordered to shut down, whereas some activities were had permission to run as usual. On 25 March government ordered to suspend the collection of toll tax. Economy is suffering the worst setback ever. MHA made a revised list of permitted activities resuming from 20 April which include e-commerce companies, agricultural activities, some chemical industries, construction sites and now also the toll tax collection.

The National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) will resume the collection of toll tax from 20th April, this move was opposed by the transport fraternity. The lockdown is extended till 3rd May but government have shown some relaxation in agricultural and other economic activities, the trucks and goods vehicle for transportation would be required, however the transporters apex body all India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) have shown opposition for this. The toll services should be resumed, said the Ministry of Road Transport through a letter to NHAI.

The ministry said that NHAI have given reasons so as to why their services should be resumed, saying that the ministry of home affairs have permitted few activities such as agriculture and constructions. “It has been further highlighted that user fee collection contributes to the government exchequer and also provides financial strength to NHAI in terms of budgetary support,” the letter mentioned.
“This is appallingly preposterous. On one hand the Government want the continuity of essential supplies and which our fraternity is doing against all odds and at even loss, in service of the nation,” said the AIMTC.

Kultaran Singh Atwal , the President said that the transport system are in hell broke loose situation, they don’t have labours for loading or unloading, they do not even have drivers, he said that government instead of helping us in this though times , they are putting a lot of burden on our heads. The transportation system is not in condition to bear the toll taxes. These tolls costs for over 20% of the total cost.

NHAI is already very worried since past 5 years as it is in debt which has now obviously increased after the temporary suspension of toll services. The NHAI will have to deal with a loss of 1822 cr. In this 40-day lockdown period.

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