The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) in Delhi, said it will introduce an interoperable system so that FASTags can be used to pay parking fees at malls, airports and other private parking lots across the metropolitan cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Bengaluru.
FASTag is an electronic toll fee collection system in India run by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI). The payments collected from this medium will be contactless, which assumes importance given the ongoing world pandemic.
Even as many parking lots in the country are being powered with digital payment solutions, some are semi-automated but not completely contactless.
However, FASTag, an electronic toll connection device fixed on the windshield of a vehicle, enables drivers to zip through toll plazas without having to stop.
Equipped with radio frequency identification technology (RFID), the device has been enabled to collect toll charges directly from the prepaid wallet or bank account linked to it.
The GMR Hyderabad International Airport is already using this facility. "NPCI has also initiated discussions with major malls, airports and other private parking lots in Chennai and Bangalore for the NETC (National Electronic Toll Collection) FASTag powered contactless car parking solutions. The company has been receiving interests from major banks in spearheading the parking projects," according to NPCI's statement.
The NETC FASTag solution will work both as a post-paid and pre-paid solution for securing parking at a commercial and official buildings. There will not be any additional cost to customers other than the one-time purchase cost of the tag.
There are plans to dedicated lanes for vehicles with FASTag solution.
"We are aiming at taking this unique contactless parking proposition in metro cities keeping in mind the convenience of passengers and visitors. In this new normal during the COVID-19 pandemic situation, 100% contactless payment solution is going to be the need of the hour," Praveena Rai, COO, NPCI said.