With EV adoption on the fast track, there has been a proactive contribution from authorities, government, OEMs, and automakers across the country. In line with the same, the government is working to launch a master app that would work as a one-stop source, integrating information in terms of location and availability of the nearby vehicle charging stations. The app would also give details about the charger types and charging tariffs, letting the end user make or cancel reservations at the stations.
Convergence Energy Services (CESL), a green energy-focused venture of the EESL Group owned by central public sector undertakings under the Ministry of Power, New and Renewable Energy has already begun the process of collating information from the private sector experts which would aid in the development of the super app. Upcoming as a means to ease the range anxiety issues that drivers face, the expected time for the app to go live is four to six weeks.
Suman Mishra, CEO, Mahindra Electric Mobility, said “We thank the government of India for leading the initiative to integrate and launch a one-stop super app for EVs. It will help reduce range anxiety amongst EV owners and enable faster adoption across the country. We look forward to its implementation.”
As per think tank, NITI Aayog’s report, there are about 1,827 charging stations operating across the country, and this app is considered a mutually beneficial arrangement for all the stakeholders.
As reported by a financial daily, CESL will install 590 fast DC chargers of 50kW capacity and 220 chargers of higher 100kW capacity. The idea is to make the chargers with 50kW capacity available every 25 kilometres and the 100kW chargers in every 100 kilometres.
Rajiv K Vij, Founder, Plug Mobility commenting on the same said, “Government’s decision to come up with a super app through CESL will go a long way in addressing concerns of EV vehicle owners about the battery range and help in faster adoption of electric vehicles across India. Along with the Super App, CESL’s announcement of setting up 10,000 charging points and involving private charge point operators in this initiative to set up and manage the same, is also a welcome step.”
It is also hoped that all the charging stations will actually become functional as many of the current charge stations are installed but not functional making them of no use to the EV owners. It is critical that all charging stations are in fully functional state at all times and are also easy to locate so that EV owners can actually reach the locations where they are installed easily and use them for charging their vehicles,” he added.
While the initiative can bring significant ease of operation, it is important to note that a well-built infrastructure is equally important. A strong network of EV charging and swappable stations is a crucial aspect.
The government has formulated the FAME India Scheme in 2015 to improve the infrastructure required for the large-scale use of electric vehicles.
Under Phase-I of the FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India) Scheme, 479 charging stations have been installed as of July 1, this year. The Ministry of Heavy Industries permitted 2,877 Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations in 68 cities across 25 States and Union Territories under Phase II of FAME India.