To engender a positive public perception of electric vehicles (EVs), the Maharashtra government’s draft policy is going to make compulsory the provision for EV charging points in housing societies, public parking lots, business and shopping complexes. Once it receives Cabinet approval, which is expected in June, this will become a reality.
This plan was disclosed at a webinar called ‘Town Hall on Electric Mobility’, by the transport department authorities on Wednesday. One of the most primary concerns for EV owners would be the recharging of the vehicle’s lithium-ion batteries, which act as fuel. According to government officials, necessitating the provision of charging points in residential housing societies, office complexes shared by corporates and institutions, dedicated parking lots and government office buildings will surely change perception among people and could boost the demand for EVs.
Maharashtra Transport Commissioner Avinash Dhakne said that his own family members had asked him why people would buy electric vehicles if infrastructure like charging and battery swapping stations were not easily available. “One of the primary concerns is setting up good infrastructure for supporting electric vehicles and their charging systems. Having them in housing societies and in public parking lots is a challenge,” he said.
The state accounts for 12 per cent of the total sale of EVs across India. “So, we have suggested mandatory allocation of charging points in every housing society, government office and bus depot. Urban local bodies will be encouraged to provide property tax rebates to residential owners for installing private charging infrastructure within their premises,” said Dhakne.
As this is still a draft policy, the state government is open to suggestions from the public at large. “We are still open for suggestions. Mobility is getting transformed continuously and we aim to have 10 per cent of new registered vehicles to be electric, by 2025,” said Ashish Kumar Singh, Additional Chief Secretary (Transport), Maharashtra government.
The draft policy on EVs has said that upcoming residential property projects should keep 20 per cent mandatory parking for EVs, 25 per cent in institutional and commercial complexes, 25 per cent in dedicated parking lots and 100 per cent in government offices. The government also wants to make Maharashtra the top producer of EVs.