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The transport ministry has just announced that they will not set a deadline for a transition from petrol and diesel engines to all-electric vehicles. Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister, Road Transport and Highways, made the statement and we are sure it comes as a relief to the automobile industry.
*Image for representational purpose only.
A few months ago, the NITI Aayog had drafted guidelines and set a deadline for phasing out (ICE) internal combustion engine vehicles and switching to electrics. They also proposed that all two-wheelers 150cc and below should be electric and not internal combustion engines.
Responding to the NITI Aayog guidelines, Mr Gadkari said that his ministry has not proposed a deadline. He also said that a lot of state governments were in the process of procuring electric buses and that the transition to all-electric will happen as a natural process.
During June this year, a committee led by NITI Aayog's Chief Executive Amitabh Kant, laid out a road map to ensure a smooth roll out of electric vehicles. The road map also encompasses plans to set up battery production facilities in order to bring down the costs of EVs.
This committee envisioned an extensive plan for replacement of all three-wheelers and two-wheelers that are 150cc and below, by 2023 and 2025, respectively.
Mr Gadkari has said earlier that he would call a stakeholders' consultation meeting before setting any deadlines for transition to electric vehicles.
The auto industry in witnessing its worst slowdown in over 19 years. The industry has been lobbying against policy measures meant to eventually phase out petrol and diesel run vehicles in the country.
Thoughts About A 'No Deadline' For Transition To Electric Vehicles
So, we find the government and their think tank, the NITI Aayog, to be an absolutely confused lot. On some days they announce transitions to all-electric vehicles within a few year, and on other days they say that there is no deadline for the transition. We think they do not have a solid plan. Some one is sitting with a pair of dice and making statements against numbers written on deck of cards! At least with Nitin making a statement about there being no deadline, the industry can breathe a little and take a few things off of its plate.