Locals won’t have to pay highway toll, Governor assures after protests erupt in Valley

Locals won’t have to pay highway toll, Governor assures after protests erupt in Valley

SRINAGAR: Governor Satya Pal Malik on Thursday said that locals would be exempted from paying toll tax on National Highway 44, a day after strong protests against its imposition in Jammu and Kashmir.
“There won’t be any toll tax on the locals. We have taken up the issue with the central government but due to the ongoing election process things have slowed up a bit,” the Governor told reporters in Srinagar after inaugurating grade separator to decongest traffic at TRC junction
Traders, transporters, and commuters have all been up in arms against the toll tax. A group of traders and transporters on Wednesday submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner Anantnag demanding rollback of the toll tax. The two top regional parties, National Conference and the PDP, also demanded rollback of the tax. NC called the move “unfair and unjust” while the PDP said such a measure would hit the already bleeding economy of the state.
The governor inagurated the grade Separator which was conceived during the Traffic Surveys done for the preparation of Comprehensive Mobility Plan for Srinagar City in the year 2013, has been built by the Economic Reconstruction Agency, with the objective to decongest the traffic at the TRC Junction.
The main Limb of this Grade Separator is from Sonawar to Linz side (405 metres) and it has another diversion- J&K Bank Limb (225 metres) so that commuters who go towards M.A. Road from Sonawar can use the Limb to directly reach the M.A. Road.
Congratulating the executing agencies, Malik said that this new infrastructure will facilitate the commuters in Srinagar to great extent and regulate the traffic flow at the ever busy TRC Junction.