The Karnataka government intends to provide incentives to electric vehicle (EV) companies who convert petrol-powered two- and three-wheelers.
A senior government official said, “We want to look at it from the demand side, and give a policy push to drive demand,” he was involved in stakeholder discussions. Officials hinted at giving incentives to entrepreneurs as part of a policy push, but they stressed that the discussions are still in the early stages.
When it comes to electric vehicles and battery storage policy in 2017, Karnataka was ahead of the game. The government, on the other hand, is dissatisfied with the rate at which stakeholders are adopting electric vehicles, and it is in this context that a policy nudge is being considered.
The government is working on measures to drive the transportation industry toward clean-energy choices as a method to combat vehicle pollution, according to Industries Minister Murugesh Nirani. Electric cars, he added, have a bright future since renewable energy is abundant, and EVs will have lower operating costs, making them more appealing to consumers. Many firms in places like Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Gurgaon, and Pune have been working on conversion kits that can be retrofitted into automobiles to transform them into either fully electric or hybrid vehicles. These businesses are hoping that rising gasoline prices would encourage a big number of consumers to convert to electric vehicles.
“People won’t switch to EV until their existing scooter’s life is done. The best way to accelerate an EV is to retrofit it to EV,” said HR Vivekananda, CEO at Bounce, a ride-share company that has already transformed about 100 bikes into EVs. “For this to be encouraged, subsidy on retrofit is required.”
The industries department is optimistic that it will be able to get the necessary regulatory approvals for such modified cars, allowing them to quickly gain market acceptability. It intends to concentrate on two- and three-wheelers for the time being.
Officials from the industries department stated that once a policy framework is finalized, Nirani and the finance department would review it before presenting it to the Cabinet for approval.
If the proposed strategy involves government money, the finance department will have to provide allocations, according to the source.
Vivekananda said, “Millions of petrol scooters can be quickly converted to electric and it also comes with the lowest carbon footprint. It’s also an effective way of scrapping.”