Bombay HC asks Maha to spell out policy on charging toll on bad, incomplete roads
Mumbai: Hearing a bunch of PILs against toll being charged on incomplete and bad roads in various parts of the state, the Bombay High Court on Wednesday asked the Maharashtra government to file an affidavit explaining its policy in this regard within two weeks.
A Bench of Justices S J Vajifdar and Gautam Patel also asked the state to spell out its stand whether it would continue to collect road tax on Pune-Shirur highway and other places despite incomplete projects and poor condition of roads.
The state has also been asked to explain why the contractors appointed by the government were collecting toll despite a letter written by Public Works Department (PWD) to stop levying such amount.
One of the PILs was filed by one Shashikant Changede against toll being charged on roads which are incomplete in Pune and Ahmednagar. The petitioner informed that on the Pune-Shirur road there were two toll nakas and government was not monitoring cash flow at one.
The other petition was filed against toll collection at Pune-Shirur highway despite bad conditions of roads.
The high court had earlier directed the PWD Secretary and Chief Secretary to evolve a comprehensive policy in general to put in a place a regulatory mechanism. In this regard, the state was directed to file an affidavit.
However, the state government today informed the high court that they had not yet affirmed the affidavit and would do that soon.
According to PILs, the term of the contractor collecting toll at the Pune-Shirur highway was to expire on July 6, 2015 and as per the practice, the contractor was being given extension every three months till the period got over.
The current period of three months was to slated to expire on December 31, 2013. Thereafter, it could be given further extension.
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