• 01 Apr 2024 06:07 PM
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Nitin Gadkari vows to eliminate petrol, diesel vehicles in India soon: 'Not impossible'

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Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has said that it is ‘one hundred per cent’ possible for the country to get rid of petrol and diesel cars altogether to make India a green economy.

Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has said that it is 'one hundred per cent' possible for the country to get rid of petrol and diesel cars altogether to make India a green economy.

In an interview with news agency PTI, Gadkari said "It is difficult but not impossible. This is my vision."

Without a timeline to meet this ambitious target, the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways vowed to get rid of over 36 crore petrol and diesel vehicles in the country. He said he wants to slash GST on hybrid vehicles.

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The union minister said the country spends 16 lakh crore on fuel imports. If we stop this fuel import, this money can be used to improve the lives of farmers, the villages can be more prosperous and youth can get employment.

Earlier too, the union minister had advocated the use of biofuels and alternative fuels to drive unprecedented growth in the energy and power sector.

GST reduction on hybrid, flex engines

The union minister told PTI that a proposal to reduce GST on hybrid vehicles to 5% and 12% for flex engines has been already sent to the Finance Ministry which is considering the requisition.

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Gadkari said he firmly believes the country can end fuel import by promoting the use of biofuels.

Gadkari on alternative fuels

The Union minister said he has been pitching for alternative fuels since 2004 and is confident that things will change in the coming five to seven years.

"I cannot give you a date and year for this transformation to take place as it is very difficult. This is difficult but not impossible," PTI quoted Gadkari as saying.

The Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways said he firmly believes that given the speed with which EVs are being introduced in the country, the coming era will be of alternative and biofuels and this dream will come true.

Gadkari said auto companies such as Bajaj, TVS and Hero are also planning to manufacture motorcycles using flex engines and auto rickshaws using similar technology were on the way.

"I roam around in a car that runs on hydrogen. You can see electric cars in every other household. People who used to say this was impossible, have changed their views now and started believing in what I have been saying for the last 20 years," the minister added.

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"Tatas and Ashok Leyland have introduced trucks that run on hydrogen. There are trucks that run on LNG/CNG. There are 350 factories across the country of bio-CNG," he further said.

"Definitely, a revolution is taking place. The fuel imports will end and this country will become self-reliant – Atmanirbhar Bharat. I strongly believe in this," Gadkari added

Reacting to the development, environmental activists welcomed increasing green mobility but also struck a word of caution by flagging the use of fossil fuels in the production of electricity.

"In India, we are still heavily dependent on a fossil fuel-based energy system to power electric cars, and this needs to be changed. There is an urgent need to ensure 100 per cent renewable energy alongside electric vehicles to tackle the climate crisis," Avinash Chanchal, a campaigner for Greenpeace India, told PTI.