March 6, 2020
Industry, academia, technocrats, start-ups and officials of Coimbatore have joined hands with the Government of India in taking various initiatives to scale up the manufacture and adoption of electric vehicles in the country.
The government has already formulated the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020 to achieve this end. Under this Plan, it had launched the FAME Scheme (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles) for giving subsidy to electric vehicles to the tune of Rs 10,000 crore in the next three years.
These observations were made by the speakers at the “Session on E-Mobility” jointly organized by the EEPC (a trade promotion agency set up by the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry), and SSEM (Society for Smart E-Mobility) at CODISSIA Complex, Coimbatore.
Mr K.Suresh Kumar, Scientist, Office of the Principal Scientific Advisor to Government of India, in his keynote address said that the Central Government was open to work with individual units in achieving E-Mobility goals. He pointed out that the countries such as the US, Japan, Germany and to a certain extent Korea had focused their attention on E-Mobility.
Japan had launched a pilot project on vehicles running on hydrogen as fuel. It had chosen hydrogen because China had an overall control over lithium (used in batteries for the electricity driven vehicles). Suresh Kumar said that India did not have any known sources of lithium.
A comprehensive survey and feasibility study would have to be undertaken to find out any possible lithium deposits. He noted that in the next three years it was proposed to produce one million two-wheelers and 7,000 passenger buses running on electricity. For that to happen necessary infrastructure and components like battery cells ought to be created.
Power electronics was another area that needed greater attention. Therefore, the government was looking at the comprehensive ecosystem. This disruptive event was throwing up great opportunities for the industry and the start-ups in exploring E-Mobility prospects,Suresh Kumar added.
Srinivasan, Executive Vice-President of Ather Energy, Bengaluru, in his speech on “Creating an ecosystem of Global standards” said that global initiative of E-Mobility would open up immense opportunity for India to scale up electricity run two-wheelers and three-wheelers. While the deep pocketed Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) were focusing on e-motor vehicles, India could uptrend the move by concentrating on e-two wheelers and emerge as a global leader in this segment.
Srinivasan further said that e-charging would not be an issue. The chargers could be standardized so as to energize the vehicles either at home or at work places, and also on the highways, as was the case with mobile phones. With the evolution of technology, the duration of time required for electric charging of the vehicles could also be considerably brought down.
Srinivasan was sure that five years down the line, the price of e-vehicles would become lesser than that of the internal combustion engine driven vehicles.
Manikandan, representing Dr Bindu Dubey, Member-Advisory Board, SSEM, said that it was proposed to set up two EV Technological Parks in Tamil Nadu—one in Chennai (land has already been identified) and another at Coimbatore (land is yet to be identified).
Later, Shankar Vanavarayan, President of Kumaraguru Institutions, Coimbatore, chaired the panel discussion on “India as a key player in E-Mobility.” In his opening remarks, Vanavarayar said that the country was now at the significant crossroads in terms of evolving and promoting emobility.