Electric Vehicle Demand in India More Than Doubled in the Last 3 Years

In a written reply to a question on electric vehicles (EVs) in the Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Heavy Industries Arjun Ram Meghwal said that the number of registered EVs as per the e-Vahan portal during the last three years has seen a consistent increase. As against 69,012 units of EVs sold in India during 2017-18, its numbers increased to 143,358 units in 2018-19 and again rising in 2019-20 to 167,041 units. The number included both two-wheelers, three-wheelers, and buses but two-wheeler sales have been upbeat, the minister informed.

The Minister notified the House that EVs are being supported by the way of demand incentives under FAME India Scheme phase II to reduce the cost difference between the electric vehicles and ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) vehicles.

He declared that the government is also taking several other steps for the promotion of electric vehicles in the country. GST on electric vehicles has been reduced from 12 percent to 5 percent; GST on chargers/ charging stations for electric vehicles has been reduced from 18 percent to 5 percent.

Furthermore, the Ministry of Power has allowed the sale of electricity as a ‘service’ for charging electric vehicles. This would provide a huge incentive to attract investments into charging infrastructure, the Minister announced.

Beneficially, the government has also granted an exemption to the Battery Operated Transport Vehicles and Transport Vehicles running on Ethanol and Methanol fuels from the requirements of the permit.

In the Budget of 2019-20, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the provision of an additional income tax deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh on the interest paid on loans taken to purchase EVs. To promote EVs, the Government has notified for retro-fitment of a hybrid electric system or electric kit to vehicles and has specified the type-approval procedure of electric hybrid vehicles.

Also, the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has announced certain specifications for the grant of license to the age group of 16-18 years to drive gearless E scooters/ Bikes up to 4.0 KW.

Additionally, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has made amendments in the Urban and Regional Development Plans Formulation and Implementation (URDPFI) guidelines to provide EV charging stations in private and commercial buildings.

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