Auto industry body SIAM said it is bound to honour the Supreme Court verdict on sales and registration of BS-VI vehicles from April 1, 2020, onwards despite the order being a "huge challenge" for the industry as a whole. In a statement, Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) President Rajan Wadhera said the government had provided a clear window of three months for registering the small number of fully built vehicles and six months for bus/truck chassis which may remain unsold with the dealer/manufacturer post April 1, 2020, after considering all aspects of the matter.
"However, the ongoing debate at the Supreme Court had created a huge ambiguity leading to policy uncertainty. While the verdict reads down a clear Gazette Notification issued by Government, it also puts to rest the big ambiguity haunting the industry for so long," he added.
With this "new clarity", the industry will have to put in much more effort and attention to meet the new target date of ensuring sales and registration of only BS-VI vehicles from April 1. 2020 onwards, Wadhera said.
"This will be a tough and huge task, as the date of manufacturing BS-VI vehicles will now have to be further preponed leading to still shorter time for vehicle testing and validation and even shorter lead time to the technology solution providers who have to optimise BS VI solutions for each vehicle model," he added.
The industry will put its best foot forward in efforts to comply with the Court Order, in the interest of improving the environment and its own commitment to the theme of Building the Nation, Responsibly, Wadhera said.
He, however, added that now it has become even more critical that the BS VI fuel of the desired specification should be made available freely across the length and breadth of the country well before the deadline of April 2020 so that the industry could commence sales of the BS VI vehicles.
"Any slippage in making fuel available in any part of the country will have serious implications as BS VI vehicles will not be able to operate optimally on lower grade fuels," Wadhera noted. On October 24, a three-judge bench headed by Justice Madan B Lokur made it clear that only BS VI compliant vehicle shall be sold in the country from April 1, 2020. The apex court was deciding whether grace period should be given to automobile manufacturers for the sale of BS-VI non-compliant vehicles after April 1, 2020.