26 green express highways in India by 2024, promises Gadkari
Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday said that the government will construct 26 green express highways by 2024 and bring down travel time between key cities across the country. He was speaking at Rajya Sabha on Wednesday. Gadkari also said that the Transport Ministry is also planning to introduce new technologies at toll plazas in order to reduce traffic snarls.
Gadkari said travel time from Delhi to Dehradun, Haridwar, and Jaipur will be reduced significantly after highways are complete. "Delhi to Chandigarh will take two-and-a-half hours, Delhi to Amritsar four hours, and you will be able to do Delhi-Mumbai in 12 hours," he told members. "By 2024, I guarantee that roads in India will be like those in the United States," he said.
Gadkari stated that the government is considering two new toll collecting alternatives, including a satellite-based system that will utilize GPS to debit tolls straight from the car owner's bank account. "The other option is the numberplate," he said. "There will be a computerized system by which we can use the software to collect toll," he added.
According to him, the system will record the position at which a car enters a toll road and the location at which it leaves it. When a vehicle travels a certain number of kilometers on a highway, tolls are taken from the owner's account. He claimed that although the ministry has not yet decided on the technology, it would be chosen within a month.
Gadkari said 5.56 crore FASTags have been issued so far, and the average daily toll collection through FASTag is Rs 120 crore. He said that FASTag, an electronic toll collecting system, has helped "immensely" with toll collection.