On October 14, 2019 the union minister of Road Transport & Highways and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Shri Nitin Gadkari inaugurated conference on ‘One Nation One Tag – FASTag’ in New Delhi for rolling out usage of unified electronic system in the country.
- Several states/authorities signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with Indian Highways Management Corp Ltd (IHMCL) for FASTag integration in the state, as toll collection will be mandatorily done through FASTags effective from December 31, 2019 onwards.
- IHMCL and Goods & Services Tax Network (GSTN) signed MoU on E-way bill system integration with FASTtag, to overcome track and trace mechanism for GST E-Way Bill (EWB) System whereby the revenue authorities can track whether goods travel to the specified destination, vehicle tracking by transporter through SMS (Short Message Service) alerts, revenue leakage at toll plazas and also to improve monitoring. This system will become mandatory with effect from April 2020 onwards.
FASTag mobile app & NHAI wallet:
- My FASTag mobile App was developed by IHMCL and NHAI for the FASTag customers. The App links bank account of neutral FASTag to bank account of customer’s choice.
- NHAI Prepaid Wallet was also launched during the occasion, giving customers an alternative choice of not linking their FASTag to their bank accounts.
- Other features of App: UPI(Unified Payments Interface) recharge of bank specific FASTag. With this facility, more than 80% of FASTag issued can be recharged; single portal for customer login page for issuer banks; Search feature to find nearby Point-of-Sale(PoS) location by various banks and IHMCL; List of Operational Toll Plazas under NETC programme, and Customer Support Toll-Free numbers.
i, Toll collections: The toll collection at national highways is done through Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology based FASTags. But in-case of state highways, toll collection is done manually or by any other means of tags, thus leading to road user inconvenience. To overcome this, the ministry preferred the use of FASTags for easy movement of transport.
- 6 Million FASTags were issued so far, with overall cumulative ETC collection of over Rs 12,850 Crore since inception. As of September, total cumulative number of successful ETC transactions carried out is over 5540.67 lakhs.
ii. Sheme guideline circulation: To promote FASTag usage in Sate/ City Toll Plaza, scheme guidelines were circulated in all states by Indian Highways Management Corp Ltd (IHMCL).
- The scheme cut shorts the turnaround time in state, thus allowing to be part of the FASTag solution architecture. The architecture supports approx. 6 million tags with approximately daily 10 lakh transactions.
- IHMCL assistance: 50% of the financial assistance is provided by IHMCL at the capital expenditure(CAPEX) cost of installation of Electronic Toll Collection(ETC) on both lanes, costing about Rs 20 lakh and also bears ETC programme management fee.
iii. Members present: The Minister of State(MoS) for Road Transport and Highways Shri Vijay Kumar Singh and other ministers and officials were present during the occasion.
- FASTag is an electronic toll collection system in India, operated by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI). It uses Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to make toll payments directly from the prepaid or savings account linked to it or directly to toll owner.
- The system was initially set up as a pilot project in 2014 between Ahmedabad and Mumbai.
- FASTags will be affixed on the windscreen of a vehicle and can be used to pay toll across all toll plazas in the country. Cashback of 2.5% is also provided for FY(Fiscal Year)2019-20 as part of FASTag promotion.
- FASTag issuance: National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) functions as the central clearing house for FASTag while 23 public and private sector banks are issuing FASTag currently.
- Usage areas: FASTags are made acceptable at 490 National Highways toll plazas and selected 39+ State highways toll plazas.