Maharashtra plans to rework electric vehicles policy
As it failed to achieve much three years after rolling out the electric vehicles (EV) policy, the Maharashtra government has decided to improvise the scheme in better synchronisation with various other departments of the state and Central governments. The state is also planning to have a gigafactory in Maharashtra for manufacturing batteries and increasing the number of charging stations to provide a boost to EVs over the next few years.
Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray held a meeting on Friday to review the status of the implementation of the policy, which was rolled out in 2018. A committee headed by additional chief secretary of transport department Ashish Kumar Singh has prepared a revised draft of the policy by updating and fine-tuning it with the Central policies and the decision issued thereafter. The state is also planning incentives and subsidies to the industries and manufacturers of the vehicles and auxiliary businesses such as manufacturers of batteries, chargers, spare parts, among others.
Thackeray has directed the transport department to present the revised policy before the state cabinet for its approval at the earliest.
“The policy should focus on steps to be taken for its effective implementation in rural and urban areas by setting up robust infrastructure for the charging stations. The policy should also tap the subsidies to be given to suppliers and manufacturers, besides the foreign investment. It should also look at the measures that need to be taken to encourage EVs in public transport and their maximum use in the government sector,” he said.
Environment minister Aaditya Thackeray has directed the administration to push for steps to promote charging stations at housing societies.
Maharashtra was one of the first states to unveil its EV Policy in February 2018. However, it could not be implemented effectively due to the subsequent changes made by various Central government departments.
“There are many changes made by various Central government departments after our policy was rolled out. Maharashtra, being a leader in the manufacturing and sales of the vehicles, was supposed to witness a boost to environment-friendly vehicles, but the delay in framing the integrated scheme of incentives resulted in a lukewarm response from the industry. We aim the share of EVs in the new vehicle registration by 2025 to increase by 5, 10 and 20% for four, two and three-wheelers, respectively. We are also aiming to set up at least one Gigafactory for manufacturing advanced batteries. Manufacturing giants such as Tesla are expected to invest in the state, for which incentives are being rolled out,” said an official from the transport department.