The new implementation of scrapping your old vehicle and getting incentives to buy a new one is a very idea that the Indian government has come up with. But there is catch - a person is eligible for incentives only if he or she is buying a vehicle that delivers mileage above 14km/l.
A senior official related to the incentive program has confirmed that 'Gas Guzzlers' will be exempted under the policy. This basically means that most SUVs sold in India will not be eligible for incentives.
According to the government estimates and under the proposed Voluntary Vehicular Fleet Modernisation Policy (V-VMP), if car owners are will to scrap their old vehicles, around 28 million polluting vehicles will be taken off the roads.
Although things have not been confirmed and finalised yet, few calculations indicate that many cars in India now boast mileage figures of around 25km/l plus. There is catch to it though.
What are the disadvantages?
One of the main reasons the government is asking people to scrap their old vehicle is because of air pollution. The main contributors to air pollution are diesel vehicles and most of the vehicles that boast mileage above 25km/l are diesel vehicles again!
One arguable point is that new diesel vehicles pollute less than the older ones, but the bare basic is it still pollutes. People would end up buying more diesel vehicles. Also, the Ban on vehicles above 2000cc is a welcoming rule, but thinking of it again, hasn't the government banned cleaner vehicles?
Not that we are taking a particular manufacturer's side, but think of it - banning diesel vehicles that are above 2000cc include international manufacturers like Mercedes, Volvo, Audi, and BMW. What concrete proof do we have saying that the latest diesel car above 2000cc pollutes more than a 2 year-old 1.5-litre diesel car?
There's no concrete proof available. It is a wiser choice for the government to ban cars that are 10 years and above and lift the rule for modern day 2000cc diesel engines. Another crucial fact that the government can implement is taking off the city buses and replacing them with newer ones or with electric ones.
Buses are a big cause of air pollution as well and the government is looking for an easy way out to keep air in check by banning new vehicles that are comparatively greener. If diesel vehicles itself are an issue, the government can subsidise electric vehicles further. The government could also encourage and educate people to opt for electric vehicles than an internal combustion vehicle.
So if you are looking to scrap your vehicle soon and plan to buy a new vehicle with the incentive scheme to pollute the air less, keep in mind that a new vehicle may not really help unless it's an electric or a hybrid car.