The ‘Learn to pay’ phase – that’s possible in India only

I’d wished we had some more India style trials in Europe. Sometimes and in certain circumstances, like that one I experienced today at a toll station in Kerala close to Pallakad and the border with Tamil Nadu: there, during the last months a new Indian highway has been built – not comparable with a European 180 km speed/hrs highway (as dogs, people and every kind of vehicle are using it in all directions), however a very viable and broad road. Such a modern highway requires also a regular toll pay. Therefore, a huge toll station has been built. Nothing strange so far. 

When we arrive at the toll station, employees sit inside the small cabins. We stop, we take a bill, we want to pay … But the employee just says: “No,no, not to pay. Test only” , and he gives us a sign to continue. When I ask my driver about this strange behaviour, he explains that “probably the works have finished earlier than planned. The active toll activity will start only later. That’s why they have implemented a “just do as if it already worked phase” for now. ” 

I smile. I like that. It is a crazy situation – everything is in place. All employees sit in the cabins. The electronics work. A lot of cars pass by. They stop. Most of the drivers with some ruppies in the hands … And then the friendly hint of one of these employees sitting behind glass walls of “We don’t want you to pay …! We are just testing.” 

“A test phase can make people aware that in the future they have to pay when they go with this road. They do not take the money at this stage, they just test how it could work. They count the cars and lorries passing by – so they can calculate how much they will earn in the future”, he adds.  I understand … No, I do not understand. 

Toll station in  trial phase
Toll station in trial phase

Indian logics. Indian style at its best. 

We should definetly have such test phases for our European highways, too. People will love it. 

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