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Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Asserting that there are no illegal toll gates in Odisha, Union Transport minister Nitin Gadkari today said the state has to pay more by way of toll if it wants better roads.

Gadkari, who is in Bhubaneswar to take part in the Vikas Utsav being organised countrywide by the BJP to celebrate two years of the NDA government at the Centre headed by it, was addressing media persons here this afternoon.

Asked about the row over toll collection and the legitimacy of some the toll gates on National Highways (NH) in the state, Gadkari said; “I have read the statement of the Chief Secretary in which he has said that none of the toll gates in Odisha is illegal. We are planning investments worth around Rs 15 lakh crore in the highway sector. We are funding these through borrowings. In every country, people have to pay toll when they use big highways. If you want good services, you have to pay for it."

"The bus owners of Odisha met me and they discussed their issues. But the demands they raised during the discussion cannot be fulfilled for Odisha alone. If we have to take a decision, then it has to be implemented countrywide. However, we are considering if something can be done about the toll paid by passenger buses. I cannot promise anything because it is not within my powers. The approval of the PMO and the Finance ministry is required in this case,” Gadkari said.

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