Parwanoo-Solan National Highway-5 damaged, demand to halt toll tax collection

Motorists using the Parwanoo-Solan section of the National Highway-5 (NH-5) have demanded immediate discontinuation of the toll tax collection by a private company on behalf of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) as a major portion of the road had been damaged in the recent rain.

Driving on the road was fraught with risk as shooting stones and debris continued to flow down from the hill.

Motorists questioned why they were compelled to pay the toll when the road posed risk and barely a single lane was operational.

The authorities have failed to erect a single signage along the road from Dharampur up to the toll plaza even after multiple landslides.

Kasauli MLA Vinod Sultanpuri has requested the CM to intervene for immediate discontinuation of toll collection from commuters. "Commuting on the road has become unsafe as it has sunk at several places. Repeated landslides have added to the motorists' trouble," he said.

NHAI project director Anand Dhaiya said, "Toll exemption is a financial issue dealt by the financial and commercial wing of the NHAI. There is no provision of discontinuing toll collection in view of a natural calamity."

He, however, agreed that the people's concern was justified. "The work to clear the road is being done by GR Infraprojects, which has four-laned the road. Five critical stretches where damage was huge are yet to be repaired," Dhaiya said.

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