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Toll collection stopped again at Thiruvallam following protests by Congress, CPM workers

A group of local CPM workers also staged a sit-in at the second gate of the toll booth.

Published: 25th August 2021 07:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th August 2021 07:12 AM   |  A+A-

Tiruchy toll booth

Representative picture of a toll booth

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Toll collection at the newly opened toll plaza at Thiruvallam on the NH-66 bypass stretch from Kazhakootam to Karode has been stopped again following strong protests from Congress and CPM workers. 

The workers staged a sit-in for two-and-half hours from 10am after the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) decided to restart the toll collection from 8am on Tuesday. The NHAI officials said that they decided to restart the toll collection after a consensus was reached with a meeting with CPM workers on Monday.

Last week, the toll collection which was scheduled to begin on Wednesday was stopped similarly by the political parties and local people. When the toll collection started on Tuesday, many motorists who were unaware, had to pay `70 for those who had Fastag and `140 for those who did not have Fastag. Some of them have protested and had a quarrel with the staff of the toll booth. At 10am, the Congress workers led by Kovalam MLA M Vincent blocked the gate of the toll booth and staged a sit-in. 

According to him, the toll collection by the NHAI was unscientific as the people had to pay a toll for travelling just three kilometres for reaching Kovalam or Vizhinjam from Thiruvallam. He also said the local people should get an exemption from the toll as they have been using this stretch for the last 35 years. 

“We are not against toll collection. We will support it once the NHAI will give a free pass for motorists from nine villages around Thiruvallam and after opening the Mukkola to Karode stretch for traffic. If the NHAI continue toll collection, we will start an indefinite sit-in from Wednesday”, Vincent said.

A group of local CPM workers also staged a sit-in at the second gate of the toll booth. “Though the NHAI convened a meeting with them, no consensus was reached and it was a farce”, a CPM worker said.However, the toll collection stopped for the day and a meeting was also scheduled at 4pm with the political parties at the office at the toll booth itself. In the meeting, 



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