No truck without RFID tag can enter Delhi from July 10

The Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority on Thursday said that no commercial vehicle without an RFID tag would be allowed in the city after July 10. 

The Supreme Court-mandated body took a dim view of the tardy implementation of the project and directed the contractor to finish the work by July 4.

“The project has already missed several deadlines and we don’t want this to continue,” Sunita Narain, member of EPCA, said at a meeting attended by all stakeholders.

While work has been completed at eight of the 13 toll points, the meeting took up the matter of the delay in the remaining five areas. 

“The contractor told us that there are many free lanes at Rajokri and that’s why it’s becoming difficult to regulate the entry of commercial vehicles there. But at other places, we asked him to complete the work soon,” Narain said.

To ensure optimum use of the eight entry points that now have the system in place, EPCA directed SDMC, the nodal agency for the project, to immediately remove temporary collection booths. “We visited the entry point at Tikri and found that temporary booths were still operational there. This was creating confusion,” Narain said. 

An SDMC official said: “In a day or two, we will issue a public notice, clarifying that no commercial vehicles will be allowed in the city without RFID tags.” The information has also been shared with transport associations. SDMC has been asked to place mobile kiosks for registration of commercial vehicles at common points near the borders.

Till date, the civic body has issued 40,000 RFID tags.

Sagar Sharma, an activist-lawyer, had filed an RTI last month, seeking information about the money spent on the project. Sharma claimed that SDMC had failed to utilise even a fourth of the amount allocated despite missing the deadline by so many months. 

Replying to the RTI, SDMC stated that of the Rs 84 crore allocated for the project, around Rs 17.6 crore had been spent till May 29. It said the Supreme Court had approved the estimated cost in August 2018 and the environment compensation charge mop-up was to be used for the project.

An official said payments would be made once construction work was over. “Of the Rs 84 crore, almost Rs 60 crore is meant for construction. The remaining amount is for 5-year maintenance. The funds will be released in phases,” he said.