After Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari told Lok Sabha today that Global Positioning System (GPS) based toll collection on the national highways will replace the physical toll booths within a year, Transport Secretary said that a pilot project is being conducted currently to study the system.
The findings of the pilot project will be known soon and the project will be scaled up accordingly.
Elaborating on the pilot project for GPS-based toll collection, Giridhar Aramane, Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport And Highways said, "The government is working on a pilot project for GPS-based tolling. Once the system is rolled out across the country, there will be no need of toll plazas."
"The pilot project is being conducted on the Mumbai-Delhi national highway. As part of the pilot project, 500 vehicles have been fitted with GPS for the purpose of satellite-based tolling. The pilot project is likely to be finished within a year, after which it will be scaled up on the national highway network," Aramane added.
Aramane further said that the government will also launch a policy for installation of GPS devices in all the vehicles. He, however, did not specify a timeline for the retrofitting GPS on existing vehicles or mandatory fitting of GPS during manufacturing as the ministry is first awaiting the results of the pilot project.
As of now, all commercial passenger vehicles sold after 2019 are equipped with GPS-based vehicle tracking system.
Apart from decongesting the highways, the GPS based system will deduct toll based on the stretch of the highway utilised by a vehicle at the time of travel, rather than the present system of flat rate irrespective of the distance travelled.