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Modi government plans major policy push to promote electric vehicles

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The strategy is in marked contrast to the approach of most countries including the US, Japan and China, which have earmarked billions of dollars in subsidies for electric vehicles and have advised India against schemes that aren’t funded this way.

India will soon embark on an ambitious programme aimed at switching most, if not all, of its vehicles to battery power by 2030. In an audacious move worthy of Elon Musk, the key to the plan’s success will be the eschewing of subsidies driven by a battery leasing strategy. The scheme, which kicks off in the next few months, includes limited tax breaks for manufacturers and the sale of vehicles without batteries to improve affordability, said a senior government official with knowledge of the said a senior government official with knowledge of the plan.

The strategy is in marked contrast to the approach of most countries including the US, Japan and China, which have earmarked billions of dollars in subsidies for electric vehicles and have advised India against schemes that aren’t funded this way. India, however, is forging ahead with its contrarian strategy that will start with public transport in the first phase, said the official cited above. Indian Institute of Technology-Madras professor Ashok Jhunjhunwala will spearhead the programme, he said.

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