Next time you are stuck at a toll plaza at one of the entry-exit points to Mumbai because of heavy traffic congestion, there are chances that you would be allowed to pass by without paying the toll.
Vehicles at toll plazas will be allowed to leave without paying the toll at the time of heavy traffic jams. Public Works Department (MSRDC) minister Eknath Shinde assured the legislative council that such directives will be issued to the toll companies across the state.
“People have no objection in paying the toll but don’t like waiting in the queue for hours. Heavy traffic congestion make them wait in queues for long adding to their woes. Toll nakas will be asked to leave vehicles without collecting toll at the time of heavy traffic congestion,” Shinde said in the Upper House, replying to a debate during calling attention motion.
The issue was raised by Congress legislator Sanjay Dutt and others while NCP legislator Vidya Chavan demanded that the vehicles should be allowed to leave without paying toll during heavy traffic jams as this adds to the misery of the people.
“A few days back people had to wait for three hours at Dahisar toll naka to reach their destination. In such a situation, people should be allowed to leave toll nakas without paying the toll. The move will also help in easing traffic congestion in short time,” she said.
In the Assembly, Shinde announced to introduce e-toll system at all the toll plazas, including nine on the Mumbai-Pune expressway in the next six months to avoid long queues. He also announced to consider the parking bays along the e-way to be utilised during the emergencies.
“The government has also chalked out Intelligent Traffic Management System (ITMS). The Electronic Toll Control system has been introduced on the Worli-Bandra sea link, Airoli and Mulund toll nakas and the rest of the toll points will be equipped with e-toll collection system in the next six months,” he said.
Ajit Pawar of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) suggested during the debate to widen the roads as the fourth lane wherever possible to accommodate the broken-down vehicles, as they are the cause of most of the accidents.