Bastara toll tax lowered for Ghraunda block residents

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Karnal
  • Updated: Feb 27, 2015 22:40 IST

A private toll booth on national highway-1 agreed on Friday to give special concessions to the people of more than 50 villages of Gharaunda block, at its Bastara toll plaza in this district.

Besides issuing special vehicular passes to the residents living within 10 kms of the tollbooth, Soma Isolux, the private toll-collecting company, also agreed to construct a lane at Bastara toll plaza reserved exclusively for the vehicles with passes.

The resenting villagers have been demanding a complete waiver from toll tax ever since the tollbooth was shifted from Butana near Nilokheri to Bastara last December.

Several organisations comprising residents and commercial establishments of Gharaunda's rural segment were protesting against the toll plaza.

Due to the efforts of Harvinder Kalyan, the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) legislator from Gharaunda, an official meeting to redress the issue was held here on Friday.

The representatives of the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Soma Isolux and a 20-member committee of Gharaunda residents attended the meeting, which was convened by Karnal deputy commissioner J Ganesan.

Kalyan said Soma's officials agreed to issue special concessional passes to the villagers, while refusing to give the exact percentage of the said concession.

"There is no provision of any such concession as per the rules, but the company has agreed to consider the demands of the villagers," he said.

The toll collected is shared between the NHAI and Soma, but the latter has offered to give its share for the benefit of villagers, which happens only rarely," added Kalyan.

The BJP legislator said the work on the exclusive lane would be completed by the end of March, adding that local residents' commercial vehicles would also be given special concession by the tolling company.

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