In three months, staffers will collect toll with a smile in Maharashtra
You can soon expect toll-collection staffers across the state to behave nicely with you. Taking notice of complaints that not only common motorists, but also legislators face harassment and assault at the hands of employees of toll-collection plazas, the operators have been given three months to to get their staffers to behave properly.
There have been several cases of toll employees being rude to the common people as well as legislators. File pic
Ramraje Nimbalkar, state legislative council chairman, has instructed toll operators to train people engaged in the collection process in good behaviour and professional ethics. On Monday, the chairman called a meeting of all toll operators and the legislators who had raised the issue in the Houses.
Lawmakers face heat
Legislators are exempt from paying toll tax, but they have accused toll employees of misbehaving with them. Four days ago, a BJP legislator from Sakoli (Bhandara), Rajesh Kashiwar, had complained to the government that the employees of Mauda toll plaza had attacked him and he had fractured his arm.
Congress MLC Anant Gadgil had lodged a complaint of harassment at toll nakas along the Sion-Panvel highway a couple of months ago. Similarly, a host of legislators had told the House that motorists, including women, were upset over the rude behaviour of the toll collectors.
NCP legislator Prakash Binsale told mid-day that Nimbalkar initiated the move to resolve the issue. “The honourable chairman asked toll agencies to depute their own trained staff instead of subcontracting the business to people who are unprofessional and resort to violent means,” said Binsale.
Binsale said that he and most of his colleagues had received complaints of harassment and violence by the staffers. “The main issue here is giving respect to the people who religiously pay toll,” he said. According to one of the legislators who attended the meeting, toll agency representatives apologised to Ramraje and legislators for the ill treatment meted out to motorists and promised that corrective action would be taken within three months, as suggested by the chairman.