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How sticks and muscles rule Delhi entry points

NEW DELHI: Four months in the past, South Delhi Municipal Corporation began the ambitious undertaking to install a radio frequency id (RFID) device for choice of toll at Delhi’s borders.

The Supreme Court-directed initiative aimed to decongest the toll issues and limit the entry of business cars now not destined for the capital. The undertaking began with 13 of the 124 toll issues being chosen for the improve because 80% of the border crossings took place there. The target was to have the device in position via October 15 closing yr. Three closing dates have lapsed since, but the activity of erecting an RFID infrastructure has been achieved best at 8 issues.

SDMC officers stay undecided of when the work shall be finished. Even at the crossings where the device is now RFID-compliant, the toll quantity is still accumulated in money because the cars haven’t but got RFID tags, which deduct the volume electronically. Sunita Narain, member of the Environment Pollution Control Authority, confident that the 13 make a choice border toll plazas would be practical via March finish.

Would they be? When NewsTread took stock at 3 toll plazas at Aya Nagar, Shahdara Main and Shahdara Flyover on Monday night, it discovered that there was a long strategy to opt for toll assortment to develop into fully computerized. Traffic was still bunching up and toughies with sticks still in accordance a menacing welcome to the city.

The new infrastructure was installed at Aya Nagar closing October, but it is still a multitude when the borders speak in confidence let in advertisement cars. Around 11.15pm on Monday, there have been long queues, the time taken to cross the toll barrier behind schedule via the handbook choice of cash. A tax collector argued the RFID device may now not be used because now not many have acquired the RFID tags. “We have now not discontinued the previous device of trucks maintaining monthly passes,” he stated.

TOI saw green-clad inspection teams climbing on trucks to test their contents, defeating the very goal of a device intended to scale back stoppage time and congestion. Around 50m down the street, there have been barricades manned via stick-carrying musclemen, their eyes peeled out for drivers seeking to evade the toll creditors. Members of this so-called “flying squad” claimed, slightly disingenuously, to be wearing the sticks to “give protection to” themselves from rushing automobiles.

At Shahdara Flyover, probably the most two RFID lanes is but to be transferred from the municipal corporation to the concessionaire. And though the opposite lane had the sensors, tag readers and tool in position, it was slightly contributing to the legislation of the mess there. “Right now, the tool is best amassing main points of cars, CNG or diesel, etc, to send to EPCA every week,” stated an SDMC authentic. “We won't be able to operate the device until cars purchase the RFID tags and ensure cash of their e-wallets.”

At 11 pm, there was entire chaos at the point. The side lane intended to allow non-commercial cars and those who had paid the tax to cross was frequently obstructed via the toll team of workers, who manually verified that the cars had paid the toll. Adding to insanity was a police barricade a few metres from the toll point

At Shahdara Main, where two lanes had been RFID-compliant, the situation was nearly identical to the opposite toll plazas. “What is actually traumatic is that the non-commercial cars are pressured to idle for hours because the trucks take over the lane earmarked for non-toll cars,” grumbled exasperated Sahibabad resident Ankit Yadav.

This sorry state at the borders is largely because of the lack of co-ordination between land owing companies leading to delays in moving land for the construction of the brand new toll plazas. “Talks are still going on with the National Highway Authority of India to transfer lanes at Badarpur,” disclosed an SDMC authentic. “At Kalindi Kunj, we're in a similar fashion pursuing UP’s irrigation department to rent us land for erecting the desired infrastructure.”

But more than anything else SDMC, the nodal company for border toll assortment, turns out to have failed to boost awareness about the new device. Till date, just 6,329 cars have registered for the RFID device. “We have limited registration issues,” admitted an SDMC authentic. “We introduced rebates for essential items cars in the event that they registered, but we didn’t get a excellent response. The best strategy to make the device work is to make RFID tags obligatory and strictly prevent those that don’t have them.” Narain stated an awareness marketing campaign were authorized and was hoping the registration would pick up tempo quickly.

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