India is power surplus, so benefits of e-mobility is very much in interest of the country: Nitin Gadkari

India is poised to become one of the largest electric mobility markets in the world in the coming decade, with the Government’s push to curb pollution and reduce reliance on import dependent fossil fuels.

India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA) organized the 7th Electric Mobility event ‘India e-Mobility Conclave 2020 (IMC 2020)’ on 6th August 6, 2020 as Virtual Conference focused on roadmap and outlook for e-mobility in India.

 This conference provided a unique platform to interact, network and learn about market landscape, government policies, new products, EV & Charging Infrastructure deployments including fast charging and swapping technologies.

Chief Guest Nitin Jairam Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Minister of Shipping, and the Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Govt. of India said “India is power surplus so the benefits of e-mobility solutions is very much in the interest of the country. There is strong need to develop import substituting, cost-effective, indigenous, and pollution-free sustainable transportation system in the country and one of the most important solution is public transport on electricity.”

He added “Presently we are electric surplus, and we are planning to make generation through solar energy, we have tremendous potential through hydropower, wind power also has substantial potential, so power is not a problem. Presently, power is an alternative which is very cheap. We are also making this hydrogen fuel cell technology in this country and now the idea is to make hydrogen fuel cell from biomass. These are the different types of technology available and we must move to those which are indigenous, and we do not need imports.”

 “Government approach is to give support to all new technologies but Make In India is equally important. Our priority is particularly for Li-ion batteries. We have already given two mines of Li-ion to private people and expecting outcome soon. For diesel buses, the cost of fuel is ₹150/km but for e-buses it comes to ₹50/km, so the capital cost is high, but fuel cost is low. For manufacturers, ‘Make in India’ and ‘Made in India’ is equally important, if you are importing materials from China and other countries and assembling that is not of use. We need to find indigenous solution and that is very important,”said Gadkari.

In his keynote address Anil Shrivastava – Mission Director, National Mission for Transformative Mobility & Battery Storage in NITI Aayog said “Battery and EV will disrupt Indian scenario. E-mobility will be impacted by the pandemic and the demand for e-2W, including petrol and diesel 2Ws has picked up because people have realized that this is going to be the new normal and in that perspective the demand is going up.”

Headded “We have taken steps to improve EV demand, the Ministry of Power and Department of Heavy Industries is working on how to push e-2W and exploring a model that will separate cost of vehicle from the source of its energy i.e. battery. If we separate electric vehicle from battery, the upfront cost will be less and we are encouraging model where battery can be separated be it leasing, swapping so on — so we are exploring these options.”

Shrivastava said “Some other positive steps the government has taken is Ministry of Road Transport and Highways have finalized scrapping policy, testing centres should be there and standardization, location for e-chargers have been identified. We are very close to a tipping point in EV adoption.”

An MoU was signed between Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) and India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA) to collaborate jointly to ensure faster adoption of EV mobility & pan India scaling of EV charging infrastructure. The initial focus of their work will be on the development and deployment of the pilot EV tracker tool including associated hardware, and an analysis of the potential for Telecom towers to double up as EV charging stations along the Golden Quadrilateral of India.

Dr Rahul Walawalkar, President, IESA and  Saurabh Kumar, Vice Chairman, EESL Group signed the MoU with the presence of Debi Prasad Dash, Executive Director, IESA and Amit Kaushik, Executive Director (Growth), EESL with key Industry players. EESL driving the EV adoption in government establishments and PSU side while IESA will drive the adoption in private side and will help the companies, corporates and private users to accelerate emobility adoption.

IESA also launched EV adopters club (IESA-EAC) accelerating private adoption of xEVs in India. 

The club will work on Phased approach. EESL to provide 3 months free charging to the members of IESA- EAC members across India at EESL facilities.

Phase 1 will monitor driving patterns, XEV battery health. Phase 2 will have recommendations and suggestions with best use case to OEM’s and Phase 3 will have replication at various industrial hubs.

IESA and EESL will also jointly work on knowledge and capacity building activity for OEMs, battery operators and for charging station installers.

Dr. Rahul Walawalkar, President, India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA) opinions, “It’s great to see how fast e-Mobility eco system is evolving in India. Since the last e-Mobility conclave, we have already seen introduction of new EV models which have generated a lot of interest from consumers. The commercial fleets are rapidly adopting e-Mobility across 2W 3W & 4W segments. We need to focus on right deployment of charging infrastructure to make it easy for users to switch to electric vehicles.”

He added “With the upcoming advanced chemistry cell battery manufacturing mission of 50 GWh, we are confident that India can develop a robust eco system for R&D and manufacturing of advanced battery & EV technologies. India Energy Storage Alliance with its partnership with Energy Efficiency Services Ltd is looking to play a role in accelerating faster adoption of EVs through launch of EV Adopter Club.”

This virtual conference saw presence of eminent industry leaders, think tanks, and policy makers including Saurabh Kumar (Managing Director, Energy Efficiency Services Ltd), Naveen Munjal (Managing Director, Hero Electric Vehicles), Nishant Arya (Executive Director, JBM), Vikram Gulati (Country Head, SVP, Toyota Kirloskar), Gaurav Gupta (Chief Commercial Officer, MG Motors), Guruprasad Mudlapur (Managing Director, Bosch), Anant Nahata (Managing Director, Exicom), Anshul Gupta (Director, Okaya), Raminder Jaura (Managing Director, Schaltbau India), Dr. Sajid Mubashir (Scientist G, EV R&D Mission, Dept. of Science & Technology), Hemalatha Annamalai (Founder, Ampere Electric Vehicles), Neelkanth Marathe (Director, Automotive Research Association of India) and so on.