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Old 10th January 2017, 13:28   #10246
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by gadadhar View Post
Is this true and is this applicable in other toll plazas on the highways?
(I too saw the video, and it seems it happens quite frequently. Also I heard they allow left most lane to pass freely (there is no booth here) when there is too much rush, so that the overall vehicles piled up gets reduced.)

On 2nd Jan while returning from Kerala, at Attibelle toll booth they closed all the lanes to allow a VVIP entourage to pass. The blockade was more than 10 mins and a lot of vehicles got piled up. When they opened, they let all the vehicles go without paying toll. So I think there is some provision/mandate for ensuring 'no long queues'.

BTW, I was in the Fastag lane and the tag got promptly debited of money.
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Old 10th January 2017, 13:30   #10247
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Originally Posted by deerhunter View Post
I think there are provisions in their contract to not collect toll if the number of vehicles in the queue is more than a particular number. I have been let off without payment several times at Paliyekkara, but I have also had to wait there in long queues at other times.
I too had received this WhatsApp forward, and I had looked up some information. Toll collection is governed by the National Highways Fee (Determination of Rates and Collection) Rules which does not provide for free pass-through in case of vehicle pile-up. Further, the NHAI website has samples of the contracts it enters into, with the toll operators - I looked at a couple but neither of them specify this condition. So I am of the opinion it is an unsubstantiated rumour.

In Kerala there is already an anti-toll movement (in fact, the incumbent public works minister couple of days ago lashed out against all toll collection) so the operators I guess are careful not to precipitate any volatile situation due to traffic congestion, that's all.
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Old 10th January 2017, 13:36   #10248
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by deerhunter View Post
I think there are provisions in their contract to not collect toll if the number of vehicles in the queue is more than a particular number. I have been let off without payment several times at Paliyekkara, but I have also had to wait there in long queues at other times. It probably depends on the toll supervisor in charge at any particular time. But legally speaking, I believe there is some limit in the length of the queue beyond which the vehicles have to be let off without collecting toll.

The contract terms maybe different for different NH stretches. But I have seen several news articles about this 'no toll if queue is long' for Paliyekkara toll plaza.

Interestingly, found this in the nhai website. Duties of toll plaza supervisor:
Attachment 1593868
Quote:
Originally Posted by bejoy View Post
(I too saw the video, and it seems it happens quite frequently. Also I heard they allow left most lane to pass freely (there is no booth here) when there is too much rush, so that the overall vehicles piled up gets reduced.)
I too got a free run at Paliyekkara left lane when there was a long queue. My cousin who is a regular on that route advised to stick to the left lane and I think only that lane was left free. It will be interesting to know if this rule is applicable to the toll booths in TN Highway where the queues are extending to few kilometers on busy weekends. Even if it is applicable, I am sure it is not practiced
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Old 12th January 2017, 19:02   #10249
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by deerhunter View Post
I think there are provisions in their contract to not collect toll if the number of vehicles in the queue is more than a particular number. I have been let off without payment several times at Paliyekkara, but I have also had to wait there in long queues at other times. It probably depends on the toll supervisor in charge at any particular time. But legally speaking, I believe there is some limit in the length of the queue beyond which the vehicles have to be let off without collecting toll.

The contract terms maybe different for different NH stretches. But I have seen several news articles about this 'no toll if queue is long' for Paliyekkara toll plaza.

Interestingly, found this in the nhai website. Duties of toll plaza supervisor:
Attachment 1593868
Yes, the Paliyekkara toll booth is a highly volatile area. Any issues they immediately have people marching towards the booth. So probably to keep all this at bay they open up.
Interestingly this sort of rules and regulations are unheard of for our guys at the Thoppur / Krishnagiri booths. Both see long queues most weekends. I myself for one had a very long wait with a 3km long queue on both my onward and return journeys (upto an hour each at both booths). I assume they never open up for free vehicular movement however bad the situation is
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Old 14th January 2017, 01:20   #10250
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Originally Posted by unni246 View Post
Yes, the Paliyekkara toll booth is a highly volatile area. Any issues they immediately have people marching towards the booth. So probably to keep all this at bay they open up.
Interestingly this sort of rules and regulations are unheard of for our guys at the Thoppur / Krishnagiri booths. Both see long queues most weekends. I myself for one had a very long wait with a 3km long queue on both my onward and return journeys (upto an hour each at both booths). I assume they never open up for free vehicular movement however bad the situation is
Time to form all India toll booth users association and educate people on their rights on roads which are built using their tax money. Do CAG or other agencies audit their revenue and tally it with project cost, on PPP model? Or is it just what construction company claim and show on papers?
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Old 14th January 2017, 01:54   #10251
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by mykal shoemaker View Post
Time to form all India toll booth users association and educate people on their rights on roads which are built using their tax money. Do CAG or other agencies audit their revenue and tally it with project cost, on PPP model? Or is it just what construction company claim and show on papers?
Here is one cost-profit analysis. I dont know how true their estimates are. But looks pretty legit.

Link

Quote:
The Guruvayur Infrastructural Private Limited (GIPL), the company that is in-charge of the collection of toll at Paliyekkara on the Mannuthy-Angamaly stretch of National Highway 47, will collect Rs. 6,000 crore in the stipulated period of 17.5 years. But the expense for the company has been estimated at Rs. 600 crore.

Last edited by deerhunter : 14th January 2017 at 01:56.
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Old 15th January 2017, 08:18   #10252
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by deerhunter View Post
Here is one cost-profit analysis. I dont know how true their estimates are. But looks pretty legit.
This was reported in many of the vernacular dailies when it was first published. Since KSSP (the organisation that conducted the study) is a known left-leaning one, I generally assumed their findings would largely conform to the left policy of no tolls, which is true too. Anyway, I looked up the actual report; it had some issues that I didn't really like.

Issues in data collection:

- Data collection was not done at Paliyekkara, but at Kodakara (8 km away).
- Data collection ignored return journeys, monthly passes etc. Each trip was counted once at the single trip's rate.
- Data was collected for a single 24-hour period, plus some 1-hour periods to model the time-of-day variations. I think this is inadequate.

Issues in data analysis:

- 12% annual growth in vehicles is assumed (number from MVD Kerala). Does a 12% growth in vehicles in Kerala translate to a 12% growth in traffic through Paliyekkara? I find this assumption specious.
- Does every category of vehicles grow at 12%? Not analysed.
- The share of traffic attributable to non-Kerala vehicles is not considered. This route caters to tourist and pilgrim traffic to Munnar, Alapuzha, Sabarimala etc. Does that also increase at 12% annually?
- Time value of money is completely ignored. The researchers seem to assume time value of money = inflation, which is simply not true.
- I don't know how interest on corporate loans or VGF is calculated, but I doubt it is done on simple interest basis, which is how this report does. The interest burden on the operator seems to me is very low as per the calculations in the report.

On the other hand, there are some egregious examples of misusing/mismanaging public resources in the report, for example:

- The company has built only the Mannuthy-Angamaly stretch of NH 47, but the toll is for Mannuthy-Edapally distance. WTF?
- The concession is for 17.5 years, but can be extended till 30 years at the company's call.
- The company gets full tax exemption on the toll for any 10 financial years they choose. Never heard of this sort of condition; terrible if true.

I am attaching the report (it is in Malayalam, sorry - couldn't find an English version).

NH 47?? ??? ?????- ?????? ??????????????..pdf

Edit: Forgot to mention, there is complete lack of error analysis and confidence intervals.

Last edited by binand : 15th January 2017 at 08:23.
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Old 16th January 2017, 16:03   #10253
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Hello Friends,

Planning a trip to Guruvayur from Bangalore, for a wedding next month. Onward will be via Calicut, with an overnight stopover . Return is planned
directly to Bangalore from Guruvayur.

The question is :Currently what is the best route from Guruvayur to Bangalore ?

Thanks .
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Old 16th January 2017, 16:10   #10254
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by SAPVEN View Post
Hello Friends,

Planning a trip to Guruvayur from Bangalore, for a wedding next month. Onward will be via Calicut, with an overnight stopover . Return is planned
directly to Bangalore from Guruvayur.

The question is :Currently what is the best route from Guruvayur to Bangalore ?

Thanks .
Guruvayur-pattambi-ottapalam-palakkad-coimbatore-salem-bangalore
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Old 17th January 2017, 08:24   #10255
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by SAPVEN View Post
Hello Friends,

Planning a trip to Guruvayur from Bangalore, for a wedding next month. Onward will be via Calicut, with an overnight stopover . Return is planned
directly to Bangalore from Guruvayur.

The question is :Currently what is the best route from Guruvayur to Bangalore ?

Thanks .
In the last week of December 2016, I drove from Kochi to Bangalore. Kuthiran is still a mess. So while driving from Guruvayur to Bangalore, I would suggest you to take the Pattambi-Ottapalam-Shoranur route rather than the NH 544 route.
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Old 17th January 2017, 08:56   #10256
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Originally Posted by suresh_gs View Post
So while driving from Guruvayur to Bangalore, I would suggest you to take the Pattambi-Ottapalam-Shoranur route
And if you long for some Kerala countryside, Kunnamkulam-Wadakkanchery is a very nice road. You'd go: Guruvayur-Kunnamkulam-Wadakanchery-Shoranur-Ottapalam etc. Alternately you could connect to NH 47 at Alathur by turning off at Vazhakode.

(Note: Shoranur is in between Pattambi and Ottapalam, so Suresh's sequence is incorrect).
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Old 17th January 2017, 11:57   #10257
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by binand View Post
And if you long for some Kerala countryside, Kunnamkulam-Wadakkanchery is a very nice road. You'd go: Guruvayur-Kunnamkulam-Wadakanchery-Shoranur-Ottapalam etc. Alternately you could connect to NH 47 at Alathur by turning off at Vazhakode.

(Note: Shoranur is in between Pattambi and Ottapalam, so Suresh's sequence is incorrect).
Thanks for the pointer. I stand corrected
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Old 17th January 2017, 15:31   #10258
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Finished a quick trip Bangalore-Kumarakom-Bangalore last Sunday.
Route onward/return: Bangalore-Salem-CBE-Thissur-Edapally-Cherathal-Kumarakom.
Onward:
Started at 1am from BTM and reached waterscapes (Kumarakom) around 11.30 am. This included 2 breaks and a power nap of 15 min. It was a breezing travel till Coimbatore when i reached city bye pass at 5 am. Bad patches/Construction near Walayar and usual traffic through Angamaly, Kochi along with speed limit made me slow. Total 10.5 hrs
Return:
Started around 2.30Pm from Cherathal on Saturday. Very heavy traffic till Edapally junction and medium traffic till Angamaly. After that it was empty roads all the way with minimal traffic. Took 2 breaks of 20 min. Reached Attibele toll by 1am. Total 10.5 hrs

Enjoyed pure bliss with empty roads in TN till Kerala.
I just did the same stretch this weekend. Since I was travelling with an infant, I decided at the last minute to break the journey into 2 parts by stopping overnight at Coimbatore. When I look back I think it was a wise decision.

13th Jan - Initially had planned for 14th Jan start, but took an extra day off to start on the 13th instead. Started in the morning from Bangalore, since I had nothing else to do in the morning. Could have started in the afternoon as well but since I had a booking now at Coimbatore decided to reach early to Coimbatore, so that everyone gets enough time to rest. Drive till Coimbatore was a breeze with 4 lane roads and normal truck traffic. Covered the distance in 5.5 hrs flat.

14th Jan - To avoid Kerala traffic decided to start early at 5am. Covered the initial 40-50kms easily doing 90-100kmph wondering why google maps was showing 5.5 hrs for a 233km stretch. I realised that a little later. Encountered the multiple diversions and traffic signals which slowed down the pace considerably. About 60kms before Cochin (I think it was a Aluva town) the traffic was really bad and spent around 1.5 hrs exiting the traffic. But since the route was through major towns like Ernakulam, Cochin could not make up much for lost time. Reached Waterscapes at 2pm. Total 8 hours with 1 hr stop for breakfast.

15th Jan - Started from Waterscapes at 2:30pm. The return traffic wasn't that bad and I covered the 233km distance in 6 hrs to reach coimbatore at 8:30pm.

16th Jan - started from coimbatore at 10am. Took 5.5 hrs to reach Bangalore with average speed of 70kmph.

Conclusion - The Kerala stretch is best covered late in the night or early morning. Traffic is maddening at other times. The Metro construction st Cochin didn't help matters much and for a while, looking at the traffic I thought I am in Bangalore. But this route has good roads throughout and has got numerous eateries along the way, so its good if you are travelling with family. But the traffic takes away the pleasure of a driving holiday.

Other points - All toll booths are accepting paytm and cards, so no need to keep loose change.

Vehicle - Elite I20 vtvt. It was the first 1000+km drive after buying this car last March. It was a pleasure to drive this on the Bangalore - Coimbatore stretch. No loss of power even with 4 adults on board.

If anybody has a recent update on the route below kindly post for the benefit of other travellers
Bangalore-Salem-Dindigul-Theni-Kumily-Peermade-Kanjirapally-Kottayam-Kumarakom.

Last edited by adutta2k : 17th January 2017 at 15:35.
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Old 17th January 2017, 15:59   #10259
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Originally Posted by binand View Post
And if you long for some Kerala countryside, Kunnamkulam-Wadakkanchery is a very nice road. You'd go: Guruvayur-Kunnamkulam-Wadakanchery-Shoranur-Ottapalam etc. Alternately you could connect to NH 47 at Alathur by turning off at Vazhakode.

(Note: Shoranur is in between Pattambi and Ottapalam, so Suresh's sequence is incorrect).
Hey, thanks,

The Kunnangulam-Wadakkencherry-Alathur-Palghat route looks promising. Its SHs all the way, while the Shoranur -Ottapalam-Palghat route seems like a normal road.
Can you let me know (roadwise) , which is a better road ?

Also, once into NH47 at Alathur, I guess its smooth sailing (except for the
brief stretch close to Walayar, which anyway we cannot avoid).
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Old 17th January 2017, 21:38   #10260
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Originally Posted by SAPVEN View Post
The Kunnangulam-Wadakkencherry-Alathur-Palghat route looks promising. Its SHs all the way, while the Shoranur -Ottapalam-Palghat route seems like a normal road.
Can you let me know (roadwise) , which is a better road ?
The Kunnamkulam-Pattambi-Ottapalam-Palakkad route is all Kerala NH/SH quality - major intercity connection, about 3 lanes wide with ample shoulders, lots of traffic, mad private buses. The Kunnamkulam-Wadakkanchery road is narrower (barely 2 lanes wide) but a lot less traffic and passing through lush Kerala country side. Vazhakode-Alathur is similar, and its other appeal is that you can join NH 47 quicker and don't have to go through Palakkad town limits.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SAPVEN View Post
Also, once into NH47 at Alathur, I guess its smooth sailing (except for the
brief stretch close to Walayar, which anyway we cannot avoid).
There are two or three signals, but generally you are right. What is wrong on the Kerala side of Walayar? The troublesome stretch is on the TN side.
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