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Toll Booths Refuse To Collect Indian Green Tax

by Mary Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

06 November 2015


Road toll collectors on routes into the Indian capital Delhi are reportedly refusing to collect a new environmental levy in defiance of a recent ruling by the country's Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court gave the go ahead last month for a four-month trial of the additional charge on certain vehicles entering Delhi, with authorities seeking to improve the capital's notoriously bad air quality.

Under the pilot scheme, which was due to commence on November 1, light commercial vehicles headed for Delhi are charged an additional INR700 (USD11) on top of the regular toll fee, while large trucks are charged an extra INR1,300.

However, it quickly became apparent that the new system had fallen down on the first day. According to local media reports, the contractor responsible for the toll booths in question blamed a lack of guidance by the Supreme Court or government agencies on how the levy should be collected, and inadequate systems to enable the levy to be paid and accounted for correctly in the first place. It has also been suggested that toll booth workers are refusing to collect the levy anyway, due to fears that they will end up in confrontations with angry drivers.

The environmental authorities held a meeting with the contractors on November 4 in a bid to resolve the issue, but it may be that the Supreme Court will need to intervene, and a hearing is already scheduled for November 16.

TAGS: environment | tax | India | public health | environmental tax

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