Now Reading: Toll Plaza Employees Beat Up FIA Officer over Non-Payment of Tax
An officer of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) was reportedly beaten up by a mob of motorway employees after he refused to pay the toll tax for his vehicle before exiting the Lahore-Islamabad Motorway.
According to reports, the FIA’s Assistant Sub-Inspector, Waseem Obaid, got into a verbal spat with toll plaza employees before the situation escalated into a physical brawl. Following the altercation, toll plaza employees allegedly assaulted the FIA officer on the road. Obaid has accused the employees of mistreating him and smashing his car’s windows and windscreens in the front and back.
A similar incident occurred last week in Islamabad, when the DC FBR was arrested for assaulting a traffic warden. In retaliation for being issued a ticket for violating traffic rules, the DC FBR allegedly struck the traffic warden.
What is Toll Tax and why must it be paid?
Toll Tax is the tax that an individual pays for using a patch of road, particularly a highway. This is not a tax per se, but rather a type of recovery that a company collects from people who drive through this stretch of road in exchange for constructing and maintaining the road for a set period of time.
These contracts are awarded by the government to road builders and constructors, who pay the government to take the contract, build the road, and maintain it for a set period of time (usually 10–20 years), and then charge passengers as a recovery and profit mechanism.
To put it another way, if you are moving from one state to another, the amount received by the government for facilitating the flow of transportation services in the other state is known as toll tax. It’s a fee you pay to the government for using a specific government service. Because highways cost millions of rupees to build, the government levies a toll on those who use them. To save money, you can always take a different road and avoid the expressway or highway.
The government issues a tender/contract for the construction of infrastructure in the country, and in exchange, they are paid a portion of the cost or nothing at all. The companies, on the other hand, are not building it for free or for a good cause; in exchange, they are allowed to collect for “x” number of years. The number of years is such that they will be able to recoup their costs and earn their expected profit margin.
Toll taxes are collected for this reason.