Giving a major impetus to electric vehicle (EV) mobility the government has approved installation of 2,600 EV charging stations in 62 cities under FAME II. Tamil Nadu will get 256 such charging stations while the union territory of Puducherry will get 10.
Maharashtra tops the number of charging points with 317 followed by Andhra Pradesh with 266. Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh will get 228, 205, and 207 EV charging stations respectively.
The union territories of Delhi and Chandigarh are expected to get 72 and 70 charging stations while Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh will get 10 each.
The newly minted union territory of Jammu and Kashmir will get 25 charging points.
While Amitabh Kant, CEO, Niti Aayog said that “this would remove range anxiety” as there will be “atleast one charging station” available in a grid of 4 square km, others in the industry called it too broad-brush to make a huge difference.
“A government initiative in EV is welcome, but I am not sure this broad-brush spread of setting up stations will help accelerate adoption. A better way is to set up specific corridors. Just 70 charging stations in Delhi which is the largest automobile market doesn’t make sense,” said Amitabh Saran, CEO, Altigreen Propulsion Labs.
The charging network, he added, focused too much on personal transportation which is not where EV conversion will happen first in India. “The developing market is very economics driven and here the top down approach of scaling down from pricey electric cars won’t happen,” he explained. “Here it will be bottom up with two, three wheelers and small commercial vehicles converting first because the economics favour it.” This bottom end of the pyramid needs to be catered to, he added.
The Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) also feels that while the current initiative will be good for cars, a more low cost infrastructure is needed for two and three wheelers.
“This will greatly help the introduction of electric cars particularly the new launches that already have a good driving range. Another positive step that can greatly help the EVs, particularly the electric two wheelers would be to announce a scheme to install simple low cost charging points in sufficient numbers in the public parking lots and residential complexes,” said Sohinder Gill, director general, SMEV.