Taking on the road minister Nitin Gadkari claims to bulldoze automobile industry to pave way for pollution free electric vehicles (EVs), Maruti Suzuki chairman RC Bhargava said that the government can’t kill the industry.
“Mr Gadkari and the government are not going to kill this industry. They can’t, they won’t, why should they? This industry is a huge generator of wealth and employment,” said RC Bhargava in an interview to the ET. “Unless the EV is good for the customer, I can’t push him to buy it”, he added.
He also emphasized that there is no literal interpretation should be taken out of Gadkari’s call for switch to clean vehicles.
Earlier on Thursday road minister said “I am going to do it, whether you like it or not. I will bulldoze. Petrol diesel banaane walon kaa band-baajaa bajaanaa hai (We will take the makers of petrol/diesel engine vehicles to task.”
Gadkari, speaking in line with the government’s larger plan to have only electric vehicles in India by 2030, suggested the car makers to innovate, research and work on new technologies to find alternative transport solutions.
Meanwhile, Maruti Suzuki chairman urged government to start working on electrification.
“We, or the government, have not worked on electrification as yet. We both have to put our heads together and learn things,” he said. He also thinks one can go step by step start from the top gradually come down the ladder as technology and infrastructure keeps improving.
Moving to environment-friendly alternatives to petrol and diesel won’t be easy for manufacturers.
At present, less than 1% of the 200 million vehicles on Indian roads are estimated to be electric vehicles.
In July this year, Chairman and CEO of Mercedes Benz India, Roland Forger expressed concerns over lack of local resources such as component and battery suppliers in the country. Earlier, the Apex Court had banned diesel cars and SUVs with an engine capacity over 2000cc in Delhi-NCR region.