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Bihar cabinet approves new electric vehicle policy – EQ

Bihar cabinet approves new electric vehicle policy – EQ


In Short : The Bihar cabinet has approved a new electric vehicle (EV) policy, signaling the state’s commitment to promoting the adoption of electric vehicles. Such policies typically include incentives, subsidies, and measures to create a conducive environment for the growth of the electric vehicle ecosystem, aiming to reduce emissions and foster sustainable transportation.

In Detail : The policy, for a period of five years, aspires to see 15% of all new vehicles registered in Bihar by 2028 being electric vehicles; State Cabinet also clears plans to buy 400 electric buses

In a landmark move to champion eco-friendly transportation, the Bihar government has given the nod to a comprehensive Electric Vehicle (EV) policy. The policy places a strong emphasis on creating a conducive ecosystem for electric vehicles with a particular focus on developing a robust network of charging stations across the State.

In a parallel initiative to bolster electric mobility, the State cabinet, headed by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday, also cleared a proposal from the Transport Department to acquire 400 electric buses under the PM-eBus Sewa scheme. These buses, slated to operate in various districts of Bihar, aim to reduce reliance on conventional petrol and diesel-powered public transport vehicles.

The Bihar Electric Vehicle Policy, designed to steer the State towards a sustainable transport paradigm, outlines ambitious goals for the next five years, culminating in 2028. The policy aspires to see 15% of all new vehicles registered in Bihar by 2028 being EVs.

To incentivise the adoption of electric vehicles, the EV policy introduces various measures, including subsidies on Motor Vehicle Tax of up to 75% and purchase incentives of up to ₹1.25 lakh for the first 1,000 personal four-wheeler EVs. Additionally, there are similar benefits for the first 10,000 personal two-wheeler EVs, with subsidies on Motor Vehicle Tax up to 75% and purchase incentives up to ₹10,000.

CM’s push

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, leading by example, has been utilising an electric vehicle for his travels in Patna for the past four years, emphasising the importance of environmental conservation.

Speaking on the broader objectives of the EV policy, Transport Secretary Sanjay Kumar Agarwal said: “The Bihar Electric Motor Vehicle Policy aims to promote an electric vehicle transport system in the State, complemented by accessible EV charging infrastructure. It seeks to enhance environmental quality by mitigating air pollution while fostering startups and investments in the electric mobility sector and its associated support industries.”

Public charging stations

In a bid to make electricity more affordable for power charging stations, the policy provides a 30% subsidy on power tariffs for public and semi-public charging stations during the initial three years. “Subsidies are extended to the establishment of electric charging stations in residential apartments, with various government departments setting up public charging stations on government-owned land,” Mr. Agarwal said.

The policy also promotes the use of renewable energy for EV charging stations, with approved tariff rates for high tension EV charging stations set at ₹8/KvA for the financial year 2023-24. Further, provisions for incentives for scrapping EVs and their components are outlined in the policy as well.

Presented at COP-28

It is noteworthy that the draft of the EV policy, crafted in 2022, benefited from contributions by international expert agencies, including World Resources Institute (WRI) India. WRI India CEO Madhav Pai highlighted the Bihar Electric Vehicle Policy during a session themed “Leading E-Bus Transition: Global Experiences and Learnings” at the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP-28) in Dubai on Tuesday.

The Bihar government’s unveiling of the comprehensive EV policy underscores its commitment to fostering sustainable practices, promoting green transportation, and contributing to global efforts in combating climate change.

Anand Gupta Editor - EQ Int'l Media Network