Akhilesh Srivastava - The Man behind Tech-tonic developments in Indian Highways Sector
Posted: May 07, 2018
Indian road network, which is the second largest network in the world, has been undergoing changes for the past few years. The national highways especially have been experiencing rapid modifications in its operations as well as the infrastructure in the recent years. Also, the change in the traffic patterns on national highways, which has been infused by the growing reliance on highways by truckers and commuters, compelled the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to look into the importance of different technologies. The IT and Highway Operations division, which is headed by its Chief General Manager Mr Akhilesh Srivastava, was tasked with adopting and implementing digital transformation in the Highways sector.
Mr Srivastava, who is known for his Tech-savvy nature, has been looking after the modernisation of the national highways in India. He constantly believed in the advantages of technology and asserts that only technology could help organisations and public institutions meet the growing needs and demands of the public. Under his astute leadership, the IT and Highway Operations of NHAI has embarked on prestigious projects like FASTag, Wayside Amenities and etc. The list of projects that he has supervised is gradually increasing with each passing day. He is currently working on the initiative of "Pay as you travel" which is taking the concept of e-tolling to a completely new level.
The fastag project, which is also known as Electronic Toll Collection, is one of the landmark projects of the Government of India. This project was launched on the backdrop of congestion issues at Toll Plazas. Many a time, congestion led to traffic jams at Toll plazas resulting in unwanted delays. On busy highways, commuters and truckers used to experience a delay of at least 20 minutes. To combat such congestion issues, the NHAI along with the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has launched FASTag Toll collection system. FASTags, which are Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags, are unique in nature. When they are affixed to the vehicles’ windscreens, the RFID sensors at the Toll plazas detect the vehicles’ details and deduct the Toll without any human intervention. The Government of India made it mandatory to have FASTags for every four-wheeler purchased after November 2017. Also, it directed the NHAI to develop at least one dedicated FASTag lane on either side of NHAI operated Toll plazas. Mr Srivastava received appreciations from different quarters for his role in executing this project in a time-bound manner.
Apart from the FASTag project, Mr Srivastava was also involved in inducing IT into the Project Management Lifecycle of highway projects. He is one of the key members involved in the execution of Road Asset Management System (RAMS). For his role in modernisation of national highways with projects like Wayside Amenities, recently he got conferred with prestigious "CIDC Vishwakarma Award". And, Mr Akhilesh Srivastava represented India in the International Roads and Buildings Conference, which was held in Singapore from 9th-11th April, 2018, where he addressed delegates and representatives of different countries and shared his work experience pertaining to the revamping of national highways of India.
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