Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari indicated on Wednesday that the government may not be in position to extend the deadline for compliance with the stricter Euro VI emission norms and urged the auto industry to upgrade its technology at the earliest.
Gadkari's direction comes at a time when the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) has demanded extension of time for compliance to Euro V and VI norms saying compressing time frame will result in the risk of putting an inadequately validated technology on Indian roads.
"Automobile manufacturers have asked time for compliance of Euro V and VI norms ... Pollution is a serious problem. You cannot postpone it for long; embrace the new technology and upgrade to Euro VI norms skipping Euro V if possible," Gadkari said at the 55th SIAM Annual Convention in the national capital. "The industry body will keep seeking extension of time but the Green Tribunal, given how serious of the problem of pollution is, is not going to hear any arguments, Gadkari warned. The only solution is early compliance of emission norms", he added.
"There are 18 crore vehicles on Indian roads," the minister said adding that the seriousness of the problem of pollution could be very well understood. The government and the automobile industry on Wednesday set an ambitious target of increasing the value of output of the sector to up to Rs 18.89 lakh crore and make it among top three globally in the next decade under the Automotive Mission Plan (AMP) 2016-26.
On emission norms, the plan said that there is a need for a scientific and transparent study of the causes of air pollution in cities suggesting BS V by 2019 for new models and BS VI by 2023 for four-wheelers. The plan, a collective vision of the government and industry, also aims to propel the auto sector to be the engine of 'Make in India' programme potentially contributing in excess of 12 per cent of the GDP.
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