Several industry leaders and experts in electric mobility welcomed the Delhi government's draft "Electric Vehicle Policy 2018", which aims to ensure adoption of 25 per cent e-vehicles among new registrations by 2023.
"The draft policy is the finest ever policy for electric vehicles I have seen. I would like to congratulate the Delhi government that they are thinking in such a direction," Professor at IIT Madras Ashok Jhunjhunwala said at the day-long series of stakeholder consultations on the draft policy.
A former advisor to the government of India on electric vehicle policy, Jhunjhunwala also emphasized the need for innovation and better research so as to bring price parity between conventional and electric vehicles.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was the chief guest of the consultation organised by the Dialogue and Development Commission (DDC) in partnership with the Rocky Mountain Institute.
"The Delhi government is fully committed to taking bold steps to fight air pollution and just like the odd-even scheme, we are ready to make all necessary efforts to transition the transport sector in Delhi to electric vehicles," Kejriwal said as he inaugurated the consultation.
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief also requested the industries to invest in bringing electric vehicles on the road as subsidies won't sustain for a long period.
"The regime of e-buses will not be able to run for long just on subsidies as it can only provide an initial push. Subsidies for e-vehicles is not a permanent solution and hence, so I request all to invest in the policy," Kejriwal said.
Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot, meanwhile, said the Delhi government has already made the commitment to induct 1,000 fully electric buses and "the draft policy is a further step to establish the national capital as the electric vehicle capital of India".
All major automobile manufacturers, such as Hero, Mahindra, TVS, Kinetic, Bajaj, attended the stakeholder consultation.
Industry association such as Society for Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) and Society for Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV), fleet operators like Ola, Uber, Smart E, and Gati also participated in the event.
Concerned about the increasing level of air pollution, the Delhi government on November 27 had released the draft "Electric Vehicle Policy 2018". Through the policy, the AAP government has planned to create a significant corpus of funds to incentivize every vehicle segment.
The policy aims to strengthen the infrastructure for battery charging and swapping so as to provide access within a 3-km range from anywhere in Delhi.