Chandigarh, Sep 25 (IANS) With the Punjab and Haryana High Court Tuesday ordering status quo, the toll-free ride on the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway will continue for vehicles, other than commercial vehicles, till Sep 28.
The case pertaining to de-congestion of the busy toll plaza on the expressway and collection of toll, which was to be heard Tuesday, will now be heard by a special bench.
The newly-appointed Punjab and Haryana High Court Chief Justice, A.K. Sikri, who assumed office here Monday, did not take up the case Tuesday.
A division bench of Acting Chief Justice Jasbir Singh and Justice R.K. Jain, had earlier restrained Delhi Gurgaon Super Connectivity Limited from collecting toll from Sep 4 till Sep 20. The concessionaire was also directed to initiate immediate steps to de-congest the chaos and traffic jams at the toll plaza.
However, since no steps were taken, the bench extended the ban on toll collection till Tuesday (Sep 25) but allowed the concessionaire to collect toll from commercial vehicles from Sep 20.
Directing the concessionaire to implement the steps to de-congest the expressway toll plaza by Sunday, the high court appointed its former chief justice Mukul Mudgal as the local commissioner to inspect the new measures and to report to the high court.
Coming down heavily on those involved in the management of the Delhi-Gurgaon toll plaza for failing to remove traffic snarls there, the high court Sep 4 ordered that the concessionaire will not collect toll from vehicles for 15 days.
The bench expressed its displeasure at the concessionaire failing to remove traffic snarls at the busy toll plaza which sees tens of thousands of vehicles cross it every day, and leads to it collecting millions of rupees daily.
The court had directed the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to convene a meeting with the concessionaire and the state government to find a permanent solution to the traffic snarls at the toll plaza. It pointed out that the fight between the three sides was leading to unnecessary harassment of commuters daily.
The toll plaza sees long queues of cars and other vehicles, causing traffic jams, throughout the day. Commuters on the Delhi-Gurgaon highway have been facing a harrowing time due to the traffic snarls.