Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari asked vehicle manufacturers to discourage production and sale of diesel engine vehicles, and urged them to promote other technologies. He was addressing industry body SIAM’s annual convention virtually.
Gadkari said the government is committed to delivering vehicles with flex engines that give the users an option to run a vehicle on either 100 % petrol or 100 % bio-ethanol. The industry must promote alternative fuel technologies and fund R&D (research and development) for alternative fuels.
Gadkari said he is looking forward to the industry for quick roll-out of E20-compatible vehicles. E20 is a blend of 20 % ethanol and 80 % petrol. This will be immensely helpful in cutting our import bill and giving a direct benefit to our farmers, without a compromise on the environment.
He said his ministry is also exploring prospects of hydrogen fuel cells vehicles (HFCVs).
“Green-hydrogen is the fuel for the future. We need to find appropriate technologies for its generation, transportation and storage,” he said adding that low-cost electrolyzers will be the game changer in the energy ecosystem in India.” he added.
He stressed that the focus has been to make Indian vehicles at par with international standards in terms of crash safety, body designs and corporate average fuel efficiency (CAFE) Norms.
He noted that there is also a need to improve bus body quality for the safety and comfort of passengers.
He also said there is a need to develop low-cost indigenous battery technologies for electric vehicles (EVs).
“Development of charging infrastructure is very important for EV adoption,” he said adding that the government is strongly encouraging renewable energy-based charging mechanism for such vehicles.
Gadkari said the government is promoting the adoption of cleaner and greener alternative fuels like ethanol, methanol, bio-diesel, bio-CNG, LNG, electric and green-hydrogen fuel cell technology to reduce dependency on petrol and diesel.