Aaditya Thackeray, Maharashtra’s minister of tourism, environment & protocol, said the Maharashtra government was planning to create a fund for helping electric vehicle start-ups to scale up their operations. There are many start-ups entering the EV space but they need to scale up operations and the state government would like to support them, Thackeray said. He hoped the see them grow from regional players to national level players.
Thackeray was speaking at the Pune Alternate Fuel Conclave (AFC) in Pune on Saturday. AFC is an initiative of the government of Maharashtra, organised by Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation, Maharashtra Pollution Control Board in association with Maratha Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA). Thackeray said Pune would play a leading role in the electric vehicle industry as it had become a hotspot for EV industry and e-vehicle ecosystem was building in and around Pune.
Thackeray said Maharashtra accounted for 32% share in 4-W electric vehicle sales and 17% of electric two-wheelers sold in the country. In July 2021, Maharashtra rolled out a comprehensive EV policy, in a bid to accelerate the adoption of EVs. Maharashtra had become a leader in sales of electric two-wheeler, four-wheeler and buses. The policy push had resulted in EV sales going up by 153% in the first nine months of 2021-22. The state aims to have around 10% of all new vehicle registrations from the EV segment.
Electric vehicle adoption would pick up in the next two to three years and this shift was already visible on the Indian roads, he said. The minister said the recent electric vehicle fire incidents were only teething problems and he was confident that electric vehicle makers would take care of safety issues.
As part of the conclave, the first of its kind electric vehicle rally would be held on Sunday in Pune with electric two-wheelers, three-wheelers, four-wheelers, buses running on electric, hydrogen and biofuels and commercial vehicles participating.
This will be a 30-km rally and aimed at addressing the range anxiety in prospective customers about electric vehicles and fear of running out of power without having a charging station to charge batteries.