City residents are considering holding a joint protest soon against the Delhi-Noida-Direct (DND) Flyway toll under the banners of Noida Vikas Manch, Maulik Bharat, Janahit Morcha and other such associations. The resentment among residents against the toll charges has grown since Monday, after Noida Toll Bridge Company Limited (NTBCL) chairman RK Bhargav refused to quit the toll operations before 2031.
Janahit Morcha and Maulik Bharat have threatened to hold a protest in August while the Noida Vikas Manch has warned of a big protest on July 17.
“However, I have appealed to all residents and associations to come for a joint protest on July 17. We should all work aggressively against the DND toll and make a collective effort to get the toll removed,” said Joginder Singh Awana of Noida Vikas Manch.
He added that he will call a meeting of residents and all associations on Sunday to discuss the issue.
Captain Vikas Gupta of Maulik Bharat said that his association’s members are on the job and he plans to stage protests at the toll booths on both ends of the flyway – at Noida and Mayur Vihar.
“There is no doubt that the time has come for us to join hands and protest together. In July, there are two court cases on the DND matter – one in Allahabad high court and another in Delhi high court. But we can hold a protest before that as we cannot expect any positive move from the Uttar Pradesh government and the Noida authority,” said Gupta.
He pointed out that the toll charges have increased from Rs. 8 to Rs. 28 since the time the flyway was made operational in 2001.
Nawab Singh Nagar, a former Noida MLA, who met Bhargav on Monday too threatened to hold a protest against the flyway’s toll in August.
“But after Bhargav’s statement in the media that he will not quit the flyway before 2031, we feel a need for a joint protest of all city residents and associations. The toll is a harassment for all of us and we are ready to join hands,” said Nagar.
Since April 11, 2015, five protests have taken place against the DND toll. On June 18, a group of residents, under the banner of Maulik Bharat, gathered at the Noida end of the flyway and kept the boom barriers open for 40 minutes.