Amitabh Kant has revealed that an inter-ministerial panel has sanctioned 5,645 electric buses for operations in 65 cities
Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant has revealed that an inter-ministerial panel has sanctioned 5,645 electric buses for operations in 65 cities, a move seen towards environment-friendly mobility.
Last week, the GST Council headed by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman decided to cut the tax rates on e-vehicles from 12 percent to 5 percent with effect from August 1, 2019.
“The inter-ministerial committee for EVs today sanctioned 5,645 electric buses for intracity operations in 65 cities and for intercity operations to 8 state transport undertakings. This will give huge impetus to automobile sector, clean up our cities & drive Make in India,” Kant said in a tweet.
The Centre has been taking initiatives to popularise environment-friendly electric vehicles. In the Union Budget 2019-20, the government proposed additional income tax deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh on the interest paid on loans taken to purchase electric vehicles. Besides, certain parts of EVs have been exempted from customs duty to further incentivise e-mobility in the country.
The Centre has also approved Rs 10,000 crore under the FAME II scheme, which aims to encourage faster adoption of such vehicles by right incentives and charging infrastructure.
The government think tank has proposed that two-wheelers below the capacity of 150cc sold in the country after March 31, 2025, should be electric ones only. It also proposed that three-wheelers sold in the country after March 31, 2023, should be electric ones.
Recently, while addressing a conference on sustainable mobility, Kant had said that India has put in place a game plan for electric vehicles (EV) and its components like batteries to ensure clean cities, reduce imports and utilise solar power. And that the domestic battery manufacturing for electric vehicles provides a “massive market opportunity”, and also quickens the transition to such environment-friendly transport, which is vital for the country to help combat pollution, congestion, strengthen energy security and create jobs.
“We have a game plan to drive electric vehicles, particularly two and three-wheelers, public transport and manufacturing of batteries in India. Our objective is that we should first work on about 80 percent of components of two and three-wheelers and buses and also push manufacturing of batteries in India,” Kant said.