Govt to exempt electric vehicles, automobiles run on alternative fuel from permit requirements


Union Minister of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Nitin Gadkari speaks in the Rajya Sabha during the ongoing monsoon session, in New Delhi

Union minister Nitin Gadkari , File Photo

About 87 per cent people believe reducing air pollution is the biggest reason for them to purchase an electric vehicle and not rising fuel prices, according to a new survey that comes amid an increase in government’s efforts to promote eco-friendly vehicles.

The survey commissioned by Climate Trends and carried out by FourthLion Technologies was conducted online between August 21-24 among 2,178 Indian drivers, vehicle owners and those who plan to purchase, own or drive a vehicle in the next 10 years, the survey said.

“Transportation accounts for about 24 per cent of India’s carbon emissions and is a major source of air pollution in several cities across the country. According to a recent WHO report, 14 of the top 20 most polluted cities of the world are in India,” the study said.

The survey also revealed that most drivers and vehicle owners are personally affected by poor air quality.

Nearly 87 per cent of the people surveyed said for them, the rising air pollution is the biggest motivation to buy electric vehicles.

About 76 per cent said they along with their neighbours, friends or family – suffer from poor air quality every day or are starting to show symptoms of being affected by air pollution, it said.

Delhi seemed to be worst affected with 91 per cent of its respondents saying they or someone they knew were suffering from poor air quality.

Similarly, high percentages were recorded in Hyderabad (78 per cent), Chennai (75 per cent), Mumbai (74 per cent), Bengaluru (71 per cent), and Kolkata (70 per cent).

Drivers and vehicle owners said they are ‘much more likely’ to consider purchasing an electric vehicle after learning that ‘electric vehicles reduce air pollution through zero on-road emissions’ (72 per cent), the survey said.

India is the third largest market for automobiles and the world’s largest market when it comes to two-wheelers.

More than four million internal combustion engine vehicles were sold in India in 2017, and 81 per cent of those sales (20 million units) came from the two-wheeler segment alone.

The government is promoting electric vehicles to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and protect the environment.

The government has decided to exempt electric vehicles and automobiles run on alternative fuel from permit requirements in a bid to boost such vehicles in the country, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said.

The government is also promoting eco-friendly vehicles through Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles (FAME) India scheme, which was launched in 2015.

The second phase of FAME India scheme will be launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 7.

According to official sources, FAME II offers incentives for mass adoption of EVs with an outlay of Rs 55 billion.

Gadkari also said the ministry has done away with the requirement of local testing for initially bringing EVs into India for sale.

“This will be available for limited number of pieces in the domestic market and if the customers’ response is positive then these companies can start making the vehicles in India,” he said.