The government earlier extended the mandatory FASTag roll out date to 15 December, which was extended to 31 December on 29 December 2019 by Nitin Gadkari. Due to a shortage of tags in the market, the last date was again extended to 15 January 2020 finally.Earlier, it had been decided that from 1 December 2019 all four-wheelers, trucks and buses will have to pay toll electronically on Indian highways through a radio-frequency identification (RFID) tag called a FASTag.The Ministry for Road Transport and Highways had announced the implementation of FASTags on all vehicles from 16 January 2020. The idea behind switching to an electronic toll collection mechanism like FASTag for private or a commercial vehicles, was to reduce waiting times at toll plazas on the national highways and keep traffic moving.The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) had introduced electronic toll collection through FASTag across the country back in 2014, but it was an optional system. Toll plazas had separate lanes dedicated to tag users, but the system wasn’t quite effective. The government has now decided to make FASTag mandatory from 1 December.Here’s all you need to know about FASTag and how to get one.FASTag is an electronic toll payment system that helps people make contactless payments at toll plazas, which should theoretically reduce traffic congestion at toll plazas and reduce wait times. People need to buy the FASTag, which is an RFID sticker, from any issuing bank or payment providers like Paytm. The tag needs to be stuck to the windshield of their individual vehicles.After you buy a FASTag from an official tag provider or from an issuing or participating bank, it has to be stuck to the windscreen of the vehicle. As soon as your car goes near a toll booth, the sensor on the toll plaza scans the FASTag installed on the windscreen in your car with the help of a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID).FASTag deducts the fee charged at that toll plaza from your account. You will have to keep recharging your account electronically to pass through more tolls. The validity of a FASTag is up to five years. After five years, a new FASTag will have to be installed on the vehicle again.The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways thinks that electronic payment systems will reduce congestion at toll booths. It has implemented the FASTag system to ensure cashless payments, contactless payments, deduction of traffic congestion and reducing the time taken for commuting.This will also reduce the need for drivers to carry currency to pay for tolls, making the highway safer. And with no human intervention at the toll booth, the time spent is also reduced.Whenever you cross a toll plaza with FASTag on the vehicle, the information about how much has been deducted from your account will be sent to you through an SMS. The toll plazas will also have electronic boards that will display the amount deducted and your balance remaining.This can also be checked through the FASTag app that is available on the Android and IOS app stores.You can recharge your FASTag account through a credit card, debit card or by net banking. One needs to recharge the FASTag account with at least Rs 100 and a maximum of Rs 1 lakh.Apart from this, you can recharge the FASTag account through SBI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Punjab National Bank among other banks. It can also be recharged through payment services provider Paytm.To buy a FASTag one needs to provide documentation similar to opening a bank account. Here are the list of documents one would need to open a FASTag account:Vehicle Registration Certificate (RC) - To be scanned and uploadedPassport size photo of the vehicle ownerKnow Your Customer (KYC) documents of the vehicle owner and any document containing the address of the house.If you are buying a FASTag through your own bank or Paytm, and if you have already got your KYC requirements completed only the vehicle RC is needed. We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated. The Quint is now available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, Click here to join.