SC seeks government report on the execution of the 2012 electronic vehicle plan

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Friday asked the government of the Union to detail the steps taken to implement the National Mission Plan 2020, a policy decision taken in 2012 to provide incentives for the adoption of electric vehicles and disincentives for vehicles based of fossil fuels.

It was not difficult for the defender, who presented himself for the NGO's 'Center for PIL' and who lately has often been citing the dangerous effects of global warming in green case litigation, convincing a bank headed by the president of the Supreme Court SA Bobde, who has exhibited his sensitivity towards the environment, to seek a response from the Union government. The court requested that I detail the steps in four weeks.

Bhushan said that although the prices of electric vehicles had been reduced, the government had not taken enough steps to create infrastructure to charge the batteries of the vehicles. He said public buildings could be equipped with loading facilities.

The petitioner cited the 2015 fastest adoption and manufacturing scheme for (hybrid) and electric vehicles in India (FAME India), according to which the government had to subsidize the initial cost of acquiring electric vehicles. “Since the beginning of the scheme and until December last year, the government has provided financial support (demand incentive) for 2.61,507 electric/hybrid vehicles. Although electric buses were added to the plan to support the electrification of public transport, so far only 455 electric buses for nine cities in a pilot plan have been sanctioned, ”said the petition.

Although NEMMP-2020 requested an investment of Rs 14,500 crore from the government, as of 2018, the total budget allocation has been less than Rs 600 crore, which demonstrates the government's apathy, Bhushan said. He added that although NMMEP planned to adopt 7 million electric/hybrid vehicles, as of 2018, less than 0.3 million of those vehicles were adopted.

Referring to the electronic mobility program, which forced Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) to acquire 5 lakh vehicles for government use, tenders were awarded for the acquisition of only 10,000 vehicles from Tata and Mahindra, he said.

The total number of gasoline, diesel and CNG vehicles in India as of 2015 was approximately 210 million causing great air pollution, he said and warned that if measures are not taken urgently, the growth of vehicles based on Fossil fuels would make the situation unsustainable and violate the principles of intergenerational equity.