The South Delhi Municipal Corporation has issued a notice making radio frequency identification (RFID) tags a compulsion for commercial vehicles entering Delhi from Tuesday.
As per the notice, any commercial vehicle to enter the city’s premisses without RFID tags will be challaned and their permits may be cancelled.
The notice, issued on Friday, stated: “With effect from August 31, all commercial vehicles will be allowed to enter Delhi on payment of the toll tax/environment compensation charge (ECC) through RFID system only…. those vehicles that enter Delhi without paying through the RFID mode shall be liable to face legal action including penalty/cancellation of permit…”
Earlier last month, a similar notice was released by SDMC, and officials were seen stopping vehicles without RFID tags or telling them to return. However, a fresh notice had to be issued because last month’s drive was discontinued in view of long traffic jams on the city border points.
This time, the enforcement of the same will be done in a different manner, said corporation officials.
“Earlier, vehicles without RFID tags were told to return, leading to pile ups. This time, we will let vehicles pass and note their registration number. These will be sent to the Delhi Government’s transport department to issue challans, and cancel their permits.”
“We will write to the transport department,” said a senior SDMC official.
A transport department official informed that a formal request is still underway in this regard. On receipt of the official intimation, action will be taken accordingly.
SDMC is the nodal agency for collection of environment cess and toll tax. ECC was imposed on commercial vehicles by the Supreme Court in 2015 to dissuade their entry into the capital in order to reduce air pollution.
This fresh notice issued by SDMC has led to a strike threat by the association of cab drivers. Kamaljeet Gill, president, Sarvodaya Drivers Association of Delhi, called the use of RFID tags for movement in Delhi-NCR not feasible.
“We have raised the issue with the civic body earlier too. Cab drivers make multiple trips in a day between Delhi, Noida and Gurugram. This means, every time we cross the toll plaza, INR 100 will deducted. This is not acceptable at all. We hope the civic agency will come up with a solution, otherwise we will have to go on strike,” said Gill.
To ensure the successful implementation of the new order, special teams will be deployed at the 124 toll plazas from where commercial vehicles enter Delhi.
“All 124 toll plazas were made RFID compliant by March-end. Now, there is no reason for commercial vehicle owners to not get the tags or recharge them to enter Delhi. This must be put in place before winters when air pollution in the city goes up. The whole point of RFID was to make the toll and ECC payments cashless so that vehicles don’t pile up on the borders and cause pollution,” the official said.
RFID tags can be obtained and recharged at 39 point of sale systems set up at the city borders. The tags could also be recharged online on the SDMC website (www.ecctagssdmc.com) and the MCD-Toll mobile app.