On Monday, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) announced that starting December 1, 2019, all the lanes at toll plazas on national highways will be specifically FASTag lanes. Further in accordance with the National Highway Fee (Determination of Rates and Collection) Rules, 2008, in a case when non-FASTag users pass through these dedicated exclusive FASTag lanes, they will be charged double the toll amount.
Through this measure, the ministry aims to reduce the problem of traffic and congestion on national highways.
FASTags are government-issued smartcards for paying toll charges on highways. Rolled-out in the year 2014, these prepaid tags enable auto payment of toll, eliminating the need for vehicle owner to stop at toll plazas and make the toll payment in cash. In the process, using the RFID technology, toll amount is auto-deducted from the vehicle owner's account.
So, these FASTags collecting toll charges through the digital mode allow seamless vehicle movement as the vehicles can pass through toll plaza lanes without stopping.
It is worth mentioning here that once the FASTag gets activated, it is affixed on the vehicle's windscreen.
With FASTags becoming mandatory by the end of the year, here are some quick details on it:
Where to buy FASTag from?
If you travel by road frequently, you need to now have FASTag mandatorily and for securing it, you can buy it from toll plazas, FASTag issuing agencies such as banks and online market places that includes Amazon.
Process to establish a FASTag A/c
FASTag issuing banks including SBI, HDFC and ICICI for the issuance of pre-paid card that facilitates toll payment requires user to fill up the enquiry form at first which can be done online. And once the query is generated, you need to visit the bank branch and fill up the mandatory form and complete other documentation formalities so that your FASTag account is created.
Documents required in the issuance of FASTag
1. Vehicle owner's passport size photograph
2. Vehicle's RC or registration certificate
3. KYC documents of the FASTag applicant such as PAN card, Aadhaar, driving license that serve as a proof of his or her identity and address.
Charges involved in the creation of a FASTag account
The tag issuing authority levies a one-time registration fee of Rs. 200. Further, depending on the vehicle type, a refundable deposit amount is charged from the customer. Customer gets this deposit amount back as and when he or she closes the FASTag account.
FASTags can be recharged using Net banking, debit or credit card, NEFT or RTGS. Online recharges attract convenience fee plus there is a minimum value of recharge that depends on the vehicle type.
Given below is the table highlighting deposit amount as well as threshold recharge value for FASTags for different vehicle categories:
|Vehicle Class||Details||Deposit amount for Tag (in Rs)|
|Threshold recharge value|
|2||LCV (2 Axle or 3 axle)||300||140|
|3||Bus (2 Axle or 3 Axle/ Mini bus)||400||300|
|4||Trucks (2 axle)||400||300|
|5||Trucks (3 axle and higher)||500||300|
|6||Earth moving or heavy construction machinery||500||300|
|7||Tractor or tractor with trailer||500||300|
|8||Tata Ace and similar LCVs||200||100|