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How Delhi is emerging as the EV capital of India


Delhi is taking to electric vehicles, thanks to its citizens realising that they need act about air quality before it's too late. The government's EV policy and the high cost of petrol and diesel are also helping matters.

How Delhi is emerging as the EV capital of India
The Delhi government has said the sale of electric vehicles (EVs) has surpassed that of CNG and diesel vehicles in the national capital in the last fiscal quarter.
According to the Delhi government's database, 9,540 EVs were sold in the September-November quarter, accounting for 9 percent of the total vehicles sold here. This is much higher than the national average of 1.6 percent.
Over 82,000 petrol, 7,820 diesel, and 2,688 CNG vehicles were sold in Delhi during this period.
Jasmine Shah, Vice-Chairperson, Dialogue and Development Commission of Delhi, tweeted, "Within 15 months of launch of its EV policy, Delhi has emerged as the leading state in EV adoption with 9 percent share vs 1.2 percent nationally."
Responding to the tweet, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal wrote, "I'm glad Delhi is emerging as the EV capital of India with a 9% share of EVs. Delhi is doing everything possible to reduce its contribution to pollution."
Delhi's EV policy
Delhi EV's policy -- introduced in August 2020 – aims at increasing the EV share in total vehicle sales to 25 percent by 2024. The Delhi government  offered subsidies to the first 1,000 electric cars purchased. The government extended a subsidy of Rs 10,000 per kWh battery capacity, with benefits ranging up to Rs 1.5 lakh, to EV buyers till November this year.
For bikes, a purchase incentive of Rs 5,000 per kWh of battery capacity is being provided to registered owners. The maximum incentive on an electric bike can go as high as Rs 30,000.
Another pivotal aspect of the policy is providing EV owners with charging infrastructure. Last month, the Delhi government allowed retrofitting of EV kits in diesel vehicles in a push towards green mobility. This enabled the owners of diesel vehicles older than 10 years to convert them into electric ones and bypass the National Green Tribunal ban on 10-year-old diesel cars.
Why is a switch towards EVs significant?
Vehicles are the second-largest -- around 20-25 percent -- source of PM10 and PM2.5 in Delhi, according to an IIT-Kanpur study. The Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority, a Supreme Court-monitored body, has said vehicular pollution contributes a very high amount of nitrogen oxides and sulphate particles in Delhi's air.
Further, the share of EVs -- be it two-wheelers, autos or cars -- in Delhi is still very small. Therefore, the Delhi government aims to induct at least 35,000 EVs across segments and cut down on emissions.
Concerned citizens
The rising levels of pollution and the increasing price of petrol, diesel and other fuels are among the other factors prompting Delhi residents to opt for a greener transport. Experts predict that environmental consciousness will lead to a big change in consumer behaviour in the coming years, leading them to go for electric vehicles. 
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