India goes for e-ride, to have an all-electric car fleet by 2030

Electric car. Photo: Reuters
India is looking at having an all-electric car fleet by 2030 with an express objective of lowering the fuel import bill and running cost of vehicles.

"We are going to introduce electric vehicles in a very big way. We are going to make electric vehicles self- sufficient like UJALA. The idea is that by 2030, not a single petrol or diesel car should be sold in the country," Power Minister Piyush Goyal said while addressing the CII Annual Session 2017 here today.

Goyal is of the view that initially the government can handhold the electric vehicle industry for 2-3 years to help it stabilise.

Citing the example of Maruti, which has logged over 30 per cent profit this time, he explained that the government had supported India's largest car maker initially, which eventually led to development of the big automotive industry in the country.

Goyal told reporters later that the Ministry of Heavy Industries and the NITI Aayog are working on a policy for promotion of electric vehicles.

The minister pointed to the cost factor, saying people would like to buy electric vehicle when they find it cost effective.

About offshore wind projects, Goyal said these are more like an R&D project. The minister suggested that big PSUs, including NTPC, can initially invest in such projects that will lead to development of this segment in coming years.

Goyal said that in the last 3 years, India's energy consumption has grown by about 6.5 per cent CAGR (compounded annual growth rate), more than the figure for the last 10 years.

He said, "Through UJALA, the LED distribution programme, we have already seen about 500 million LED bulbs sold in the last two years. My job is to improve India's energy efficiency to reduce consumption wherever it is wasteful and ensure that demand is met fully."

He made a point that UDAY has not been just about financial re-engineering but financial discipline. The UDAY scheme is meant for revival of debt stressed discoms.

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