General Motors India (GMI) continued manufacturing Chevrolet Taveras that violated emission norms till as late as May this year, a month before the company announced the stoppage of production of this vehicle after it detected they were not compliant with emission norms.
“We did a random check of 20 Taveras manufactured in May 2013 and found that 75 per cent of them did not comply with the emission norms. This goes on to indicate that defective Taveras were being manufactured by the company till May 2013,” said a senior government official involved in the inquiry into GM recall.
GMI stopped production and sale of the Tavera BS-III on June 4 and the Tavera BS-IV on July 2. The very next month, the company announced the biggest vehicle recall in the country and called back 1.14 lakh units of its multi-purpose vehicle Tavera, manufactured between 2005 and 2013, to address emissions and specification issues.
Post the recall, the government formed a committee to inquire into the issue. The three-member committee headed by Nitin Gokarn, CEO, National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (Natrip), has termed it a "corporate fraud" by the company and recommended tightening of regulatory norms to prevent recurrence of such incidents.
In a report submitted to the government on Monday, the panel held the company responsible for "fraud". The panel has also said that top company executives, including CEOs and MDs who headed GMI between 2005 and 2012, were allegedly "involved" and "in full knowledge" of the violations. The panel has stipulated that the government should monitor recalls randomly to ascertain if the proper rectification was being done.