After granting exemption to “certain category of transactions” where old series of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes can be accepted earlier today, the toll suspension for all national highways has been extended till midnight of 18th November. This will be a huge relief to commuters in the wake of junking of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes. “The government has decided to extend the deadline till midnight of November 18,” an official said. The official said the decision has been taken to ensure smooth traffic movement across all National Highways and provide relief to cash-starved people who are queueing up outside banks and ATMs after Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes were demonetised.
Instructions have been issued to all concessionaires, including BOT, OMT operators and other fee collection agencies, about the extension of toll suspension date. A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced ban on Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to tackle corruption and black money, government had on November 9 said that no toll fee would be collected on National Highways till November 11 midnight. The deadline was again extended till November 14 midnight. The government had earlier decided to accept the withdrawn notes at toll plazas till November 11 midnight but that led to chaos in the absenc e of adequate change, causing massive traffic jams.
“We reviewed the situation and decided to suspend the collection of fees,” Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari had said. When asked about the loss due to non-collection of toll fee, Gadkari said the government will bear it.
(With PTI Inputs)