No toll tax for DND users: Allahabad HC

The flyway connects Delhi on the west bank of the Yamuna with Noida and East Delhi.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: October 26, 2016 8:40 pm
DND, DND toll free, DND highway toll free, Delhi Noida toll free, DND toll, DND is toll free Traffic at DND toll plaza.

The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday declared the Noida DND as toll free. The flyway connects Delhi on the west bank of the Yamuna with Noida and East Delhi. A division bench comprising Justices Arun Tandon and Sunita Agarwal passed the order while allowing a public interest litigation filed by the Federation of Noida Residents’ Welfare Association. The PIL, which was filed in 2012, had challenged the “levy and collection of toll in the name of user fee by Noida Toll Bridge Company”.

WATCH VIDEO: Big Cheer For Delhi-Noida Commuters, DND Flyway Becomes Toll Free

The high court had on August 8 reserved its judgement on the plea. In a more than 100-page judgement, the court held, “The user fee which is being levied/realised is not supported by the legal provisions relied upon by the Concessionaire (Noida Toll Bridge Company), Infrastructure Leaning and Financial Services (promoter and developer of the project) and the Noida Authority.”

It said that the “right to levy and collect user fee from the commuters as conferred upon the Concessionaire under the concession agreement suffers from excessive delegation and is contrary to the provisions the UP Industrial Development Act”. The court noted that “the Concessionaire, according to their own financial statements, has recovered Rs 810.18 crore (approx) from toll income from the date of commencement of the project till 31.03.2014 and after deduction of operation and maintenance expenses and corporate income tax, the surplus was Rs 578.80 crore (computed before interest, depreciation, and lease rental received by the Concessionaire)”.\

“They have further realised user fee/toll two-and-a-half years thereafter between 01.04.2014 and 30.09.2016 which, as per the collection of user fee in the year 2013-14 would work out to an additional sum of Rs 300 crore (approx).
“We are, therefore, more than satisfied that the Concessionaire cannot now recover the user fees from the  users/commuters of the Noida Toll Bridge the DND Flyover,” the high court said.

In the past, it has witnessed several protests seeking scrapping of the toll following allegations that the operator has already made profits. In fact, earlier this year in August, members of Janhit Morcha and several Residents Welfare Associations (RWAs) of Noida demanding abolition of toll tax on Delhi-Noida-Delhi (DND) flyway, forcibly opened the expressway for vehicles for free.

The protesters, led by BJP leader and founder of Janhit Morcha, Nawab Singh Nagar, had also launched an indefinite protest in support of their demand to make the DND flyway — expressway connecting the national capital and neighbouring Uttar Pradesh — toll free.

At that time, Nagar had said their aim is to make DND toll free, while claiming that the protest is not politically motivated. The DND toll plaza management had earlier said they have an agreement for 30 years to operate the toll.

Meanwhile, in an interview to IANS, DND Flyway Director Monisha Macedo had said that the contract for operating the flyway can even be extended for two more years if it does not earn profits within that time frame. Macedo said they are trying to recover not only the cost of construction, but also earn a return out of it.

(With PTI and IANS inputs)

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First Published on: October 26, 2016 4:40 pm
  1. A
    Ankur
    Oct 26, 2016 at 3:27 pm
    Great judgement by the court...these guys were fleeing the general public
    Reply
    1. A
      Ankur
      Oct 26, 2016 at 3:34 pm
      One more thing..mercial acitivities are to be ethical..no way people can cross MRP..other than that these guys tried to kill compeion..not allowed the Kalindi Kunj link to be widened for years even when the traffic was unbearable...stating these affects their profits....last we pay taxes and Noida Authority should maintain this...no longer nonmaintaince be made an excuse to get ourselves harred..we need to fight for our rights
      Reply
      1. S
        Soundar
        Nov 2, 2016 at 9:00 am
        All toll gates in India are looting public and allmost pering hence an audit should be conducted under the supervision of court and find out the income and expenditure and those toll gates who have collected the reguired amount told to stop the collection. It is understood that their is a nexus between the contractors and the ruling party whether it is Congress or BJP .
        Reply
        1. D
          DR ASHOK AHUJA
          Oct 26, 2016 at 12:39 pm
          But the Big question is who shall maintain it???????
          Reply
          1. A
            Amit Mukhopadhyay
            Oct 26, 2016 at 1:24 pm
            The result would be (1) lack of maintenance and (2) lack of accountability. I used this bridge everyday for five years, I know how dangerous it could be if not maintained and monitored effectively. The real-time monitoring and inspection is extremely important. Given the design and construction of DND, making it free of cost would mean increasing the possibility of unfortunate incidents manifold. Did the Allahabad HC judges ever visit DND before giving the verdict? Do they know what are the entry points and exit points and all that might happen without constant real-time monitoring and good maintenance?
            Reply
            1. H
              himanshu agarwal
              Oct 26, 2016 at 4:01 pm
              All this is happened because of Modiji and government in centre. Acche din aa rahe hain vapis
              Reply
              1. H
                Hitchcock
                Oct 26, 2016 at 2:26 pm
                How can courts interfare in commercial actvities ? What an excuse - company already made profits ??? So, every company should be closed once it starts making profit ? How can administration let such things happen? Judiciary is not above consution and is parrallel to Parliament and President. Parliament and President should not allow judiciary system to work like this
                Reply
                1. R
                  Ramesh Athavale
                  Oct 26, 2016 at 3:09 pm
                  Why should courts interfere in such matters ?
                  Reply
                  1. V
                    Vijay
                    Oct 27, 2016 at 12:00 am
                    Now get ready for encroachments, filth on road. Bullock carts, stray dogs, cows will equally share the road. What to say of tea stalls, fruit chaat vendors, fresh vegetable and Fish sellers coming up.
                    Reply
                    1. T
                      Tara Chhetri
                      Oct 26, 2016 at 2:45 pm
                      Court has jurisdiction over all items that effects the public life, security, in- justice and all------I think it is a right verdict. Govt is now on--responsible for the maintenance as any other bridge in the nation. Huge revenue is generated by the of vehs , insurance and the taxes but utilised-- not efficiently, or not on the rightful issues as it should be done especially on roads and--any items related to transport.
                      Reply
                      1. V
                        V.Ramaswamy
                        Oct 26, 2016 at 2:53 pm
                        I am a regular user of DND Flyway and it provides connectivity and convenience to the commuters between South Delhi and East Delhi/NOIDA as NH-24 is a traffic nightmare. This judgment could have been deferred till commissioning of the proposed extension of Barapullah Flyover to Mayur Vihar Phase-1. The judgment also should have identified the agency responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the DND Flyway. Another aspect is about refund of money to the commuters who use smart cards issued by the DND Flyway authorities for payment of toll.
                        Reply
                        1. N
                          NS
                          Oct 26, 2016 at 2:58 pm
                          In DND case, 30 yrs. time agreed because, because developer has projected certain revenue return on investment based on based on certain expected traffic volume. But that traffic volume has already grown 6 -7 times within 10 years of operation. On top of that toll rates are now more than double. So developer has already recovered his cost and earned handsome profit. U can't allow corporate to fleece people indefinitely. Thats why this judgement. There has to be balance between fair return for corporates and tarrifs.
                          Reply
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