FASTag Current Affairs - 2020

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Nagpur Resolution adopted at regional conference organized by DARPG

On December 22, 2019, “Nagpur Resolution” was adopted during a Valedictory session of a regional conference organized by DARPG (Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances). The conference was on “Improving Public Service Delivery” and was attended by officials from the Ministries of MSME, Road transport, north east development and officials from prime minister office.

Features of Resolution

The Conference resolved to empower citizens. The other key points of the resolution include

  • To provide better services to the citizens through policy interventions, implementation of enactments, timely updation of citizen charters, etc.
  • To adopt bottom-to-top approach. This will help reduce the timelines of grievance redressal.
  • To focus on dynamic policy, work towards long-term engagements and ensure timely publication of good governance index.

Takeaways

The resolution pointed out certain factors as Ingredients of Good Governance. The resolution focused on corruption-free transparent approach, fast decision making and positive approaches. These highlights were projected as the key for good governance. It also focused on importance of team spirit, public audit of public servants.

The resolution also said that civil servants are the most important stakeholders. According to the resolution, it is important to adopt a development-oriented approach including last man in the queue to achieve job satisfaction.

The resolution focused on “Minimum Government and Maximum Governance”

Initiatives

The GoI has launched certain initiatives to achieve “Minimum Government and Maximum Governance”. It includes

  • Launching of portals, discontinuation of interviews for junior level posts, self-attestations
  • In order to achieve transparency and efficiency, Fastag system had been launched by the Ministry of Road Transport and highways.
  • The PM Excellence Awards are now awarded based on implementation of priority programmes
  • Grievance Redressal System has been launched where the complaints lodged have gone from 1.5 lakhs (at the time of launch) to 16 lakhs in 2019.

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Govt launches Pilot Project for using Fastags for Parking at Hyderabad Airport

To ensure the benefits of FASTag beyond tolling, the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has launched a pilot project for using FASTags for parking purposes at Hyderabad Airport. Conceptualised as FASTag 2.0, the tag would cover parking payments, fuel payments, etc. After the success of project in Hyderabad, it will be launched at Delhi airport.

Key Highlights

Pilot project has been launched in two phases. In Phase I, a controlled pilot testing is being undertaken, wherein only ICICI tags would be used, while, the Phase II of pilot would cover all other Issuer Bank tags. Other banks such as SBI, HDFC, IDFC and Axis are also in talks with airports in Mumbai, Bangalore & few of the malls to launch FASTag 2.0.

The FASTag 2.0 has many exciting use cases such as Fuel Payments, Enforcement (E-challan) payments, Access Management at offices & residence. The GST council has also mandated FASTag for all commercial vehicles which would be generating an E-way bill from 1 April, 2020. This integration will be a big boost to GSTN (Goods and Services Tax Network) as it would help in identifying leakages with respect to non-issuance/ miss reporting of E-way bill.

About National Electronic Toll Collection (FASTag) programme

It is the flagship initiative of Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. It has been implemented on pan India basis across National Highway toll plazas. The programme has given a major fillip to digital India initiative by converting cash toll payments to electronic and has thus enhanced transparency in entire tolling ecosystem.

Government has recently mandated to declare all lanes of fee plazas on National Highways as ‘FASTag lanes’. This has seen a much wider adoption of FASTags both in terms of new tag sales as well as higher transactions at the toll plazas. The mandate would further increase the penetration of National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) and the higher NETC penetration will further ensure a seamless movement of traffic which would in turn bring down the overall Logistic cost in country.

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