India is steadfast in its transition to electric vehicles and a big role in this rising EV adoption in the country has been played by the government policies that encourage people to opt for EVs instead of fossil fuel vehicles. In a recent interview, Nitin Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport and Highways, reiterated this stance of the government, while also shedding light on what’s more to come in India’s EV revolution.
At the Ideas of India Summit recently organised by the ABP Network, Gadkari highlighted that India spends about Rs 16 lakh crore in fossil fuel import. He pointed out that this fuel even causes pollution when used, and that it is only natural for people to shift to an alternative that is cleaner and costs a lot less. He, thus, stressed that further transition to EVs is inevitable.
More importantly, the minister gave us a deeper understanding of how this EV revolution shall take place. He boldly claimed that “Hydrogen is the fuel of the future,” and that India’s “railways, trains, trucks, and buses will run on hydrogen fuel in the near future.” This hints at the possibility that India might soon go big on fuel cell vehicles that use hydrogen as their primary fuel, instead of direct charging of batteries through EV chargers. Such vehicles can be refueled just like petrol or diesel ones within a few minutes.
Gadkari also mentioned another perk of using such a green fuel. He mentioned that such fuels as hydrogen and ethanol shall be generated within the country by farmers. “Farmers are producing not only food but also energy,” he said at the summit. With this, he envisions India creating its own fuel in the years to come instead of relying on foreign nations for fuel imports.
In his interview, Gadkari mentioned that he envisions India to be the top automobile manufacturer in the world in the next 5 years. “There are about 400 startups in India working on electric vehicles today,” he said. As both EV penetration and exports grow, this industry is only going to get bigger in the next five years, he mentioned.