Ullal, Aug 07 2018: Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), Ullal, took out a padayatra from Thokkottu to Talapady Toll Gate in protest against poor condition National Highway 66 at Pumpwell, Thokkottu and to urge the authorities to stop the collection of toll at Talapady.
Addressing the protesters, DYFI State President Muneer Katipalla said that the toll collection at Talapady, despite failing to complete the national highway work, is nothing but daylight robbery.
According to the guidelines of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), the minimum distance between two toll gates on the national highway should be 60 km. But the toll gates are constructed within this minimum distance and a contract has been entrusted to private persons to collect the toll. The toll should be collected only after 75% of the road work is complete. Though the road work should have been completed within the stipulated periods, there is no proper service road from Nanthoor to Talapady. The work on the flyover has remained incomplete. In spite of it, the toll is collected, he claimed.
He said, “The failure of the government to blacklist Navayuga Company, for failing to complete the road works within the set timeframe, make us suspect the motive of the MP and the Central government.”
“The state government has the power to stop toll collection. The toll is being collected in Minister U T Khader’s constituency. Why can’t minister stop the collection of toll?” he asked.
Katipalla charged that the development works, initiated by MP Nalin Kumar Kateel in the district, are nothing but traffic congestions at Nanthoor, Moodbidri, Karkala, Pumpwell and Thokkottu.
He said that a padayatra is just a token protest. If the road and flyover works are not completed at the earliest, then the DYFI, in association with various organisations, will hold an indefinite protest and a drive to stop paying tolls.