Amid growing public outcry and protests, National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) is starting a new toll plaza at Lakhanpur—the gateway of Jammu and Kashmir—in Kathua district from July 21, the day this year’s curtailed Amarnath Yatra is proposed to begin.
The NHAI has signed a Letter of Agreement (LoA) for operationalisation of toll plaza at Lakhanpur with the Haryana-based Ranchordas Company.
With this, all Kashmir-bound tourists and Vaishno Devi pilgrims entering or leaving J&K will now have to shell out extra money on toll at three different toll posts—Thandi Khui toll plaza, Ban Toll Plaza and Lakhanpur toll plaza.
“This toll plaza was supposed to be made operational in 2012 when the 4-laning of Jammu-Pathankot highway was completed. The notification for it was announced in 2016 and since then we had repeatedly been approaching the local government for giving its nod to start toll plaza,” Hemraj, general manager, regional office NHAI, Jammu told The Tribune.
The general manager said they would start collecting toll from all incoming and outgoing vehicles from July 21.