The Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) has urged the government to keep registration charges nominal for electric vehicles (EVs). It has also suggested that green licence plates be mandated for all delivery vehicles, not just fleets. “Few fringe benefits of the green plate like toll free and preferential parking have been spelt out. We hope that our two core requests under the green plate wish list also become part of this plan. We have requested the government to keep RTO/registration charges only nominal for green plate vehicles and not 6-10% as of now. Also, we have requested green plates to be mandated for all delivery vehicles, and not only fleets,” said Sohinder Gill, director – corporate affairs, SMEV. Gill is also the CEO of Hero Electric. He added that green licence plate is a welcome step, and if planned and executed properly, will support EVs.
While a notification on the matter is expected in a week, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways early this week said the government has approved unique licence plates for EVs to promote their use. He said private EVs will bear green licence plates with numbers in white fonts and taxis in yellow. The government is also believed to be asking taxi aggregators to have a percentage of their fleet as EVs. It is also contemplating on permitting youth in the age group of 16-18 years to ride gear-less e-scooters. Currently, the youth in the said age group are granted licence for below 50cc gear-less scooters under the Motor Vehicles Act.
At present, there are four kinds of licence plates in the country – white plates with numbers in black font for private cars, yellow plates with fonts in black for commercial vehicles/taxis, black plates with yellow font letters for self-driven rental vehicles and blue plates with white font letters for embassies and high commissions. Defence vehicles have a different registration system given by the defence ministry, while vehicles of the President and governors carry red licence plates with the national emblem. According to the SMEV, electric vehicles make less than 1% of the total vehicle sales in the country, but has potential to grow to more than 5% in few years. In 2017-18, 24 million vehicles were sold in the country.
By: Shweta Bhanot Mehrotra