Electric U-Turn: Centre Says No Need For EV Policy At The Moment

Electric U-Turn: Centre Says No Need For EV Policy At The MomentElectric vehicles charging in London (Miles Willis / Stringer via Getty Images)

In an apparent U-turn from its earlier stance that would have let the automobile industry sigh in relief, the Centre has announced that it would not formulate an electric vehicle (EV) policy, reports Mint. Addressing the press along with NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kanth, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) Nitin Gadkari said “There is no need for any policy now”. Gadkari had earlier stated last month that the policy was awaiting cabinet approval.

India’s push towards EVs came in May last year when Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal said that the country would have an all-electric fleet by 2030. Several months later Gadkari said that the government would “bulldoze” the automobile industry out of manufacturing fuel-powered vehicles. Leading manufacturers such as Toyota Kirloskar Motors had vocally opposed this.

Among the major states, Karnataka and Maharashtra have already got an EV Policy in place.

Among the first states to do so, Karnataka under its EV policy offered incentives and tax concessions for those in the field research and development as well as setting up of production units in the state. Maharashtra on the other hand unveiled its policy just this week, offering tax breaks for vehicle buyers, charging station operators and manufacturers while also announcing cheaper electricity rates.

Backing Gadkari, Kant said that India needed action plans instead.

Everyday, new technology is coming into the market. Technology is always ahead of rules and regulations. And in India, it becomes very tough to change rules and regulations, so let there be just actions.
Amitabh Kant

Government officials, sceptical of the situation said that an EV policy package would require heavy government funds which weren’t available and therefore it was best left to the market to handle it.

Also Read: Switching To Electric Cars By 2030: What India Needs To Do