THE 34TH TRANSPORT DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL MEETING

1. The 34th meeting of Transport Development Council was held on 13.02.2012 under the Chairmanship of Dr. C.P. Joshi, Hon’ble Union Minister
    (RT&H).

2. Apart from Transport Ministers from various State Governments / Union Territories, the meeting of 34th TDC was also attended by Principal
    Secretary (Transport) / Secretary (Transport) / Commissioner (Transport) of many State Governments, representative of Central Ministries /
    Departments and representative from major transport associations.

3. Two important issues pertaining to Rationalization of Motor Vehicles Taxes and Review of Consolidated Fee in New National Permit Scheme were
    discussed and deliberated in detail in the meeting.

4. There was an in principle consensus on  bringing of floor rate of motor vehicle taxes in respect of two wheelers and cars/LMVs  at 6% life time
    tax using sale price as the base rate with  majority of the States which participated in the discussions. There was some difference of opinion on
    harmonization of motor vehicle taxes in respect of private cars vis-à-vis taxies/maxis as well as introduction of a scheme of National Permit for
    buses on lines of goods transport vehicles.

5. Hon’ble Minister (RT&H) emphasized the need for rationalization of motor vehicle taxes to simplify the system in the larger interest of citizens of
    the country including the transporters in order to reduce barriers on inter state movement of vehicles for both goods and passengers.

6. After detailed discussions, Hon’ble Minister (RT&H) recommended that the issue of rationalization of motor vehicle taxes may be referred to the
    Empowered Group of Ministers of States for arriving at a consensus on the issues and giving their Report in two months time. He also informed
    that  this will be a step  forward  towards simplification of procedures and making best use of available modern information technology system.

7. The TDC also discussed the issue regarding revenue loss incurred  by some States in the consolidated fee received by them under the new
    National Permit Scheme as compared to the revenue earned by them in the earlier system. Major States requested for enhancement of
    composite fee by 15-20% over the present fee of Rs.15,000/- per truck per annum. After detailed discussions with the major transport
    associations present in the meeting it was  agreed for a 10% increase on the present national permit fee of Rs.15,000/- and  review the status
    after two years.

SPEECH OF DR. C.P. JOSHI, HON’BLE MINISTER OF ROAD TRANSPORT & HIGHWAYS, AT THE 34TH TRANSPORT DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL MEETING TO BE HELD ON 13.02.2012.

Shri Tusharbhai Chaudhary, Hon’ble Minister of State in the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways,

Shri Jitin Prasada, Hon’ble Minister of State in the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways,

Hon’ble Ministers of Transport from various States and Union Territories,

Shri A.K. Upadhyay, Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways,

Distinguished invitees, friends,

It gives me immense pleasure in welcoming you today in the 34th meeting of Transport Development Council. I highly appreciate that you could spare valuable time from your busy schedules to deliberate on certain very important issues concerning the road transport sector. Being the apex body to advise the Government on matters relating to road transport, this Council owes a great responsibility to give shape to the policies concerning this sector. It is thus important to convene this meeting at regular intervals to take stock of the situation and move forward for developing this sector. You might have gone through the Agenda for this meeting for which we have tried to prioritise these issues.

A very important decision for introduction of a New National Permit scheme was approved in the 33rd meeting of Transport Development Council. The new National Permit scheme has facilitated the transporters to move goods vehicles across the country and the system is running very efficiently with the help of NIC, State Bank of India and Principal Accounts Office of this Ministry. The transporters’ community is also largely satisfied after the introduction of this scheme.

In order to make the road transport system in the country hassle-free and for seamless movement of goods and tourist vehicles, there is an urgent need to rationalise the motor vehicle taxes. At present, there are significant variations across the States in respect of rate, base and methodology of collection of tax. With the advancement of information technology, it has now become imperative that seamless movement of vehicles across the States is facilitated so that the transaction costs that are involved in movement of goods nationally gets reduced and this benefit is passed on to the citizens. With this objective in mind, there is a need to rationalise the existing motor vehicle taxation system in order to reap benefits of technology. I would urge upon all the State Governments to arrive at a consensus to rationalise motor vehicle taxes and harmonise the rates to facilitate easy movement of vehicles across the country. I sincerely hope that the serious discussions at this forum will result into working out of a formula for the benefit of commuters as well as transporters.

One of the issues which needs to be given greater attention relates to road safety. With massive investment in roads and the exponential growth in the number of vehicles, it has become necessary to have a system which integrates all disciplines that influence road safety. There is an urgent need to recognise the worsening road safety situation that has resulted in rising road fatalities. Taking into consideration that India has one of the highest road accidents in the world, it is high time that road safety measures get due priority by the State Governments in their future plans. Very soon, we are going to convene a meeting of National Road Safety Council and I would request the State Governments to come up with concrete Action Plans in mitigating the road accidents in the country including identification of accident prone spots and identification of reasons for accidents at those spots and taking up measures to mitigate factors at these spots.

We have also made various technological advancements in the road sector recently. The National Register and National Transport Portal were launched in July, 2011. We have almost achieved the objective of 100% connectivity and computerisation of data base of all RTOs in all States / Union Territories. We also plan to set up inter-state checkposts in the country during the XII Five Year Plan to move towards border-less and paper-less movement of goods across State borders reducing transaction costs and logistic costs to the economy. We will continue our efforts in making the best use of available modern technology for the facilitation of general public, transporters and the Transport Departments.

I would request you all to have serious deliberations on agenda items and concretise viable solutions for the betterment of the road transport sector in the country.