Aug 5: Freedom came from Mahatma Gandhi, who was born in Gujarat and now freedom from having to pay toll tax comes from and in the same state. Beginning August 15, 2016, Independence Day, people from
Gujarat, plying oncars and small vehicles, including three wheelers, transiting Gujarat will not have to pay toll tax on National Highways.

The announcement of the toll tax exemption in the state was made by none other than the Chief Minister of Gujarat. The tax exemption will take full effect beginning August 15, the Independence Day of India.

The Chief Minister had already made an unofficial announcement of the same from her Twitter handle. While the tax exemption is expected to be applicable on all highways, it is still doubtful whether the exemption will be applicable for select routes or all routes.

The exemption will be a relief to those who had to pay considerable toll tax, while traveling on highways in cars and small vehicles, while even the state of roads are very poor across most parts of India. The Chief Minister said that the government decided to exempt the toll tax for small vehicles as cars and three wheelers, paying Rs. 100-150 at toll gates, as middle class people are affected by this expenditure. However, still, commercial vehicles like cabs, taxis, mini buses, etc. will have to pay toll tax.

This toll tax exemption by the Gujarat Government may have other states go green with envy. But for the same, the elections may have to be around the corner, as it is in Gujarat, scheduled for 2017. It is also to be remembered that the toll tax has been historically protested against by many political parties as well.

The revenue loss to the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and other private players will be subsidized by the Gujarat State Government.