Support to alternative fuels such as ethanol, biofuel or electricity said minister Nitin Gadkari. He added that but will not offer any kind of duty concessions to imported parts or hybrid vehicles.
Hybrid vehicles presently attract a duty of 43%. He said that the goods and services tax (GST) rate for hybrid vehicles will not be reduced.
“It has to be either electric, ethanol, biogas or CNG-run. No hybrid.”
“India needs export substitute, cost-effective, integrated transport solution,” he said in a event by the Bus Operators Confederation of India. (BOCI)
Auto firms have been lobbying with the government to reduce duty on hybrid vehicles. Industry lobby Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturer (Siam) has been helping.
Under GST, all hybrid automobiles attract the top tax rate of 28% plus a 15% cess. This is the same rate as that for large luxury cars and SUVs.
Gadkari pointed out that with the use of alternative fuels, bus operators can reduce fares by a quarter.
India imports fuel worth Rs7 lakh crore every year and use of non-fossil fuel will help in reducing the bill in a big way, he said.
Stockholm has close to 400 buses running on biogas derived from solid and liquid waste.
He added, “ Don’t we have wastes in our country? With the use of non-fossil fuel bus operators can reduce the fare by a fourth.”
Gadkari’s statement comes amid growing population of private vehicles on Indian roads and increasing pollution levels in India.
Close to 40 new vehicles get added to the roads in India every minute, according to BOCI.
“We want to reduce the number of private vehicles and increase public transport vehicles,” said the minister.
He added that his ministry would soon lead the contingent of state transport ministers to London to understand the model of an integrated public transport system.
Such systems ensure people can travel from airports and railway stations to the destination, seamlessly.
With close to 1.7 million buses sold every year, India is world’s second largest bus market in the world globally after China” said Prasanna Patwardhan, president, BOCI.
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