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Maharashtra: Toll naka contractors mint money as government facilitates their looting act

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As reported by Surendra Gangan in dnaindia.com on 21 August 2011:



Toll naka contractors mint money as government facilitates their looting act


The RTI has revealed how toll naka contractors mint money and how government agencies facilitate them in looting the state coffer. The contractor at Thane-Bhiwandi bypass has earned more than thrice the amount till date which it was supposed to make by 2017.


The government allotted Thane-Bhiwandi bypass, also known as the Maziwadi junction toll naka, to the Ideal Road Builders in 1997 for Rs104 crore for the collection till 2017. The project included expenditure towards building, maintenance, management and operation of the national highway and the reasonable profit for 20 years.


The income to the operator was based on the traffic load on the highway, per year rise in the number of vehicles and the per year increase in the toll rate.


However, figures obtained under RTI by Srinivas Ghanekar of Thane have revealed that the operator has earned Rs306.49 crore till March 2011. The activist claimed that the government estimate in the number of the vehicles plying on the road at the time of allotment of the contract and the rise in the number of vehicles were much below the actual number.


“The government had stated that 28,000 vehicles plied per day on the road in 1998 and that the annual rise of vehicles would be 5 to 7%. But the actual increase has been nearly 25%. The vehicles expected in 2017 are plying on the road today,” he said.


Thane city MLA Eknath Shinde (Shiv Sena) took the issue to chief minister Prithviraj Chavan and demanded that toll recovery from vehicles be suspended with immediate effect. “The operator has earned money three times more than he was supposed too. In remaining 6 years, the earning will go up by another Rs300 crore.


This is the broad daylight loot of public money,” Shinde said.

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this toll naka is been operated by mr Arun Patil////son of late R.C.patil....i think mr .eknath shinde should also complaint that the toll operator has appointed bodyguards(gundaaS) to fight with daily migrants..and the fact is the roads are not even in proper shape...i hope that the government takes these things under consideration and shut the toll nakas all over maharashtra who have collected the required money of the project and plz plz plz i request the government not to give any extension to such toll operators .............

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