New Delhi: In an attempt to curb greenhouse gas emissions and reduce reliance on oil imports, the government has proposed to incentivise the purchase of electric vehicles (EVs), offering rebates of up to Rs 50,000, an official source said. The move comes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration seeks to reach its target of EVs constituting 15 percent of new car and two-wheeler sales by 2030 from the negligible share today.
A top government official said: “The idea is to give enough incentives so that the prices of electric vehicles match the current conventional internal combustion engines so that prospective buyers start giving preferences to electric vehicles over conventional vehicles.”
First phase in select cities
In the first phase, the plan could be put in place in select cities for a fixed tenure, the source said. The sops will likely be linked to battery size and type of vehicle. To make sure there are no constraints in the plan, the officials said extensive development in infrastructure is needed to provide sufficient charging stations.
Notifications to facilitate the domestic manufacture of EVs and creation of infrastructure have by now been issued by stakeholder ministries, following intervention by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
“This could be clubbed with waiving of road and registration taxes by states and partial or complete exemption from parking charges for electric vehicles, resulting in substantial savings for EV buyers,” the official said.
The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) says the biggest reason for EVs slow penetration in the country’s market is their high price, which is more than twice that of a conventional vehicle. In FY18, the total electric vehicle sales in the country were 56,000 units, up from 25,000 in the previous fiscal.