Government of India is promoting the use of Electric Vehicles (EVs) in India and has ambitious to convert all vehicles into electric powered by 2030. Karnataka has become the first state in India to issue state wide “Karnataka Electric Vehicles & Electric Storage Policy 2017” to develop the ecosystem for EVs.

This is first of its kind electric vehicle policy issued by the state and aims to develop Bengaluru as the EVs capital of India. Government of Karnataka (GoK) approved the policy on 13 September 2017. The key objective of the Policy is to maintain the lead share of Karnataka as a preferred destination for attracting investments in manufacture of Electric Vehicle. Further, the policy aims to attract an investment of US$ 4.75 billion (INR 310 billion) and will create about 55,000 jobs in the state.

Some of the salient features of the policy are:

1. The government will establish EVs manufacturing zones and clusters. The government will give incentives to manufacturers for producing modular design lithium-ion batteries with higher mileage per charge.

2. The policy encourages subsidies for charging infrastructure in all public and private properties, including airports, railway stations, metro stations, high-rise buildings, malls, information technology (IT) parks, and apartment complexes. The government will make amendments to building by-laws for providing mandatory charging infrastructure in all high-rise buildings.

3. The government will also create a special purpose vehicle involving Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC), Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (BESCOM), Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (KREDL), Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (KIADB) and other agencies to create more changing infrastructure in Bengaluru and Karnataka.

4. EVs will exempt from payment of taxes from KMVT (Karnataka Motor Vehicle Taxation) Act 1957. Karnataka has one of the highest rates of motor tax in the country.

5. The government will setup Karnataka Electric Mobility Research and Innovation Centre to promote the research in the state. Further, it proposes to set up an EV skill development centre in collaboration with the industry for up skilling the work force to augment the manpower required for the EV industry. Currenlty, there are many companies in Karnataka which are working on electric mobility – Mahindra Electric, ANI Technologies (Ola), Bosch, Delphi and various others.

6. The policy also proposes to establish working groups with supporting grants for development of necessary technologies from concept to market in the areas of Drive technologies; Battery technologies; Charging infrastructure and network integration; standards and certification; materials and recycling; quality and training etc.

7. The government will provide incentives and concessions for EV manufacture sector, battery manufacturing, and charging equipment enterprises throughout the State including Bengaluru District in line with the Industrial Policy 2014-19.

8. The government will encourage the startup to develop a business model for EVs.

The full policy document will be released soon.