New highway and expressway toll rates to be effective after Lok Sabha elections

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has asked NHAI to go ahead with the calculation of new user fee (toll) rates on highways, which come into effect annually from April 1 on most tolled highway stretches in the country. , but said the new rates should be implemented only after the Lok Sabha elections. According to documents accessed by PTI, ECI has asked NHAI (National Highway Authority of India) to defer the toll fee increase. The ECI was responding to a communication from the Minister of Road Transport and Highways in this regard.

The annual revision of toll increases was to come into effect on April 1 on most toll highways and expressway sections across the country. An average increase of 5% was expected.

The State Electricity Regulatory Commission can take necessary action to decide on electricity tariff. However, tariff awards will be given only after the completion of voting in the State, i.e. after the date or dates of voting in that State.

On April 1, 2024, the ECI wrote to the road ministry, “With regard to the clarification sought, it is stated that the user charge may be viewed in the context of electricity tariff, as stated in the Commission’s directive quoted above “”

A senior NHAI official said the change in toll charges is a part of the annual process of revising the rates which is linked to changes in inflation based on the wholesale price index.

Elections to the 18th Lok Sabha will be held on 19 April, which will be held on 26 April, 7 May, 13 May, 20 May, 25 May and 1 June. Counting of votes will take place on June 4.

The scheme said that the State Electricity Regulatory Commission can decide the electricity rates. However, the electricity rate will be determined only after the completion of the voting date in the state.

As per the National Highway Fee (Determination of Rates and Collection) Rules, 2008, there are about 855 user fee plazas on the National Highway network. Of these, there are about 675 publicly funded toll plazas and 180 concessionaire-operated toll plazas.

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