The drive on DND Flyway will soon cost you more. A board of directors meeting of the Noida Toll Bridge Company Limited (NTBCL), also attended by Noida authority chairman Balvinder Kumar, agreed on a hike on Thursday.
The NTBCL proposed a 25% hike, which means a car needs to pay Rs. 25 instead of the current Rs. 20. The Noida authority recommended a 10% hike. Noida authority chairman Balvinder Kumar said, "A sum of Rs. 22 means use of coins. This may create delay in payment and queues. We're looking at sorting out the issue. The new rates will be fixed in a couple of days."
The move comes eight months after the NTBCL effected and, under pressure from residents and the Noida authority, rolled back, within days, a 25% hike. "There has been a proposal to hike the tax anything between 10% and 22%. We didn't want to burden the commuters a great deal. A hike of at least 10% is inevitable," a senior NTBCL official said. He claimed after the Gurgaon toll plaza murder, a lot of money was being spent on improving security. "Plus, we're revamping the link in view of the F1 race," he said.
"The hike is not surprising. But NTBCL wanted a 25% hike, to which we said no. A meeting will soon be held to fix the new rates," said a Noida authority official.
The NTBCL in February agreed to roll back the 25% hike, after collection of "unilaterally increased" taxes for three days, when the Noida authority threatened to seal its office terming the structure illegal. Authority officials said rates could not be hiked without its approval. "We have the right to raise the toll periodically," the NTBCL has maintained.
The average daily traffic on DND Flyway, a crucial link connecting South Delhi with Noida, is around one lakh vehicles. As much as 75% of them are cars. "We need to hike the rates to ensure better quality of service and safety to commuters. Maintenance is our priority. We're entitled to a periodic hike," an NTBCL official said.
Toll rates have been hiked after 20 months, though there have been several unsuccessful attempts in the past.