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#NewsBytesExplainer: Why the toll agency terminated the contract for UP’s Purvanchal motorway

By on June 20, 2022 0

#NewsBytesExplainer: Why the toll agency terminated the contract for UP’s Purvanchal motorway

Written by
Srishty Choudhury

June 20, 2022, 12:09 p.m.
3 minute read

A toll was levied on the 342 km long Purvanchal highway from May 1.

The Purvanchal highway in Uttar Pradesh, inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2021, is not getting even half the traffic as expected, prompting the toll agency to quit.

The toll was levied on the 342 km long highway from May 1 and was expected to collect Rs. 65 lakh per day, however, but it only collects around 45% of the target.

Why is this story important?

  • The total cost of the ambitious project was Rs. 22,494.66 crores including the cost of land.
  • The authorities expected to earn rupees. 202 crores annually by highway.
  • Light motor vehicles pay Rs. 675 as toll tax, light commercial vehicles pay Rs. 1,065, and heavy vehicles pay Rs. 2,145 as toll tax on the Purvanchal highway.

Reasons for Low Traffic on Purvanchal Highway

According to the UP Expressways Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA), which held a meeting in June, the toll agency collected fewer rupees. 7.5 crores between May 1 and May 26 against the targeted rupees. 17 crores.

UPEIDA said the incomplete Lucknow Ring Road, high toll for heavy vehicles and an incomplete bridge over the Ganga River at Buxar in Bihar resulted in low traffic.

Lucknow Ring Road, Buxar Bridge to be ready by December

Vehicles coming from Delhi-NCR via Yamuna highway and Agra-Lucknow highway are unable to smoothly travel to Purvanchal highway due to non-completion of Lucknow outer ring road.

Notably, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) said the road will be ready by December this year.

The NHAI added that the Buxar Bridge would also be completed by December.

HGV toll 20% higher than national motorway tolls

UPEIDA also indicated that the toll for heavy goods vehicles on the Purvanchal highway is almost 20% higher than the toll on the national highways.

Therefore, heavy vehicles use the national highways instead of the highway.

He suggested that making the toll on equal footing with NHAI will increase collections.

Note, the traffic on the Purvanchal highway is less than that on the Agra-Lucknow highway.

Why did the toll collector quit?

The toll agency, Prakash Asphaltings and Toll Highways (India) Ltd, requested the state government to prematurely terminate the contract as it had wrongly assessed the achievable user fees.

He will also lose 25% of the performance bond he had given to the government.

UPEIDA will now select a new toll agent and until then Prakash Asphaltings would continue to do the job.

The highway covers more than 340 kilometers

The Purvanchal highway stretches for almost 342 kilometers.

It starts from Chandsarai village in Lucknow district and ends at Haidaria village in Ghazipur district.

It passes through nine districts of Uttar Pradesh including Lucknow, Barabanki, Faizabad, Ambedkar Nagar, Amethi, Sultanpur, Azamgarh, Mau and Ghazipur.

It also connects cities such as Varanasi, Ayodhya, Gorakhpur and Allahabad through link roads.