Maharashtra EV Policy 2021 Seeks 25 Percent EV’s For Public Transport by 2025

In a webinar organized by the State Environment Department’s Majhi Vasundhara Abhiyan, the Maharashtra government released information about the new draft EV policy  that awaits cabinet approval. The new EV policy is set to be in force from  April next year (2022). 

The policy aims to ensure that electric vehicles account for at least 10 percent of all new vehicle registrations by the year 2025. Also, the revised EV policy endeavors to electrify 25 percent of the current public transport infrastructure, including last-mile connectivity vehicles, by 2025.

The Additional Chief Secretary (Transport), Maharashtra, Ashish Kumar Singh informed during the webinar, that Maharashtra shares about 12 percent (32,000) of the country’s total EVs registrations but, the market size is still not large enough to excite manufacturers. And the state is keen to take advantage of the schemes by the Government of India in making Maharashtra a leading state in EVs manufacturing too. The state already hosts some of the biggest auto manufacturing firms and their manufacturing facilities in the Mumbai-Pune belt.  

The policy will target to switch 15 percent of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation’s (MSRTC) fleet to electric vehicles. In fact, MSRTC recently announced plans to set up electric charging points for its fleet at State Transport(ST) stations.

Additionally, the government has plans to set up over 2,300 charging stations in government buildings, MSRTC bus stops, besides petrol pumps, and malls in the future. 

Five regions across Maharashtra including Aurangabad, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), Nagpur, Nashik, and Pune have been identified for a special manufacturing focus.

According to the Transport Commissioner for Maharashtra, Dr. Avinash Dhakne, the government intends on providing full-scale EV infrastructure on four major arterial highways by 2025, namely Mumbai-Nagpur Expressway, Mumbai-Pune Express Highway, Mumbai-Nashik, and NashikPune. And 1,500 EV charging stations have been planned for MMR along with 500 in Pune, 150 in Nagpur, 100 in Nashik, and 75 in Aurangabad.

There is also a plan to build a gigafactory to provide the lithium-ion batteries for all the EV producers. 

Along with the transport department, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) is also working with the Environment Department to develop its policy for the manufacture and use of lithium-ion batteries. MPCB is in the process of drafting rules on recycling lithium-ion batteries and other electronic waste that is likely to be generated due to the boom in EV infrastructure, according to the Chairman of the MPCB. 

The EV Policy 2018 had targeted an increase in the number of EV registered in Maharashtra to 5 lacs, to generate an investment of Rs.25,000 crores in EV, EV manufacturing and component manufacturing, battery manufacturing/assembly enterprises, and charging infrastructure equipment manufacturing in the state, and to create jobs for 1,00,000 persons. The success of the policy has been a mixed bag, with limited progress on key objectives. 

State-level EV policies in India have increasingly shifted to a two-pronged approach. One, to target pubic transport first, as this is more within state control and offers realisable benefits in the form of lower pollution and cut in fuel costs. Two, to count on the two wheeler and three wheeler cargo sector to take the initial momentum, as private 4 wheeler vehicles will clearly take longer to shift. Due to an evolving charging infrastructure, especially in public places and private societies. A real push on that segment can be expected post 2025, by when the government also hopes to make serious headway on its Ethanol blending as well as domestic CBG plans to reduce fuel import costs.

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Bhoomika Singh

Bhoomika is a science graduate, with a strong interest in seeing how technology can impact the environment. She loves covering the intersection of technology, environment, and the positive impact it can have on the world accordingly.

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