New Delhi: The National Highway Authorities of India has started giving FAStags free of cost even without the security deposit of Rs 150. “Between Thursday (November 21) and December 1, you can get the FASTags for free,” Union minister for road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari said.

These tags are RFID stickers that can be used to make electronic payment for toll charges. This would cost the government Rs 150-200 crore, approximately. But owners will have to link their bank account to pay the toll amount. From December 1, all but one lane will become FASTag lanes.

A FASTag is tag embedded with a unique identification number mounted on the windscreen of a vehicle. As the vehicle reaches the toll plaza, the number is read by the RFID reader. The toll amount is deducted from the linked account.

From 1.4 lakh km of National Highways, toll charges were being collected from almost 25,000 km, as on March-end 2019. Between April-September this year, 2000 km of new National Highways are being brought under toll. Some 535-536 toll plazas have electronic toll collection systems. Barring newly installed 16-17 toll plazas, almost all the lanes have electronic toll collection systems.

Owners of vehicles without FASTags will have to pay twice the normal rate at toll gates.