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BT Brainstorm: ‘Tesla should manufacture here,’ says Nitin Gadkari

BT Brainstorm: ‘Tesla should manufacture here,’ says Nitin Gadkari

The minister was speaking at Business Today’s Brainstorm Budget 2022 event held virtually.

Nitin Gadkari at BT Brainstorm Nitin Gadkari at BT Brainstorm

Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, on Friday, spoke at length about green hydrogen, highway infrastructure as well as Tesla’s entry into the Indian market. The minister was speaking at Business Today’s Brainstorm Budget 2022 event held virtually. He added that the Finance Minister took a revolutionary step of pushing infrastructure in Budget 2022.

The minister spoke about how road travel time will be cut down due to the highway infrastructure push. He also called green hydrogen the fuel of the future and spoke about a pilot project the government is aiming to roll out in Delhi soon. Gadkari, most importantly, said that Tesla, that has been eyeing an entry into the Indian market, is always welcome but with a condition.

Here’s what Nitin Gadkari said: 

Highway infrastructure and toll

The minister said that the Budget gives a push to highway infrastructure and that India is currently making 38 km of highway every day. Twenty-two green highways and 26 industrial corridors are being made. 

“The time taken to travel from Mumbai to Pune was 8-9 hours. Now it is 2 hours. Imagine if your engine is running for 9 hours, what will be the fuel cost, as against it running for 2 hours. So, when you pay the toll, there is time saving, cost saving and fuel saving," he said.

Delhi to Dehradun used to be 8-9 hours, which has now reduced to 2.5 hours. And after the new express highway, work for which has begun from Akshardham, Delhi to Dehradun will be within 2 hours. Delhi to Haridwar will be 2 hours, to Chandigarh will be 2.5 hours, to Jaipur will be 2 hours, and to Mumbai already 12 hours. Delhi to Meerut, which was earlier 4 hours, will now be 45 minutes, the minister pointed out.  

"Toll is not the problem. If you want good services, you will have to pay for it,” he said. 

Blended fuel

“The Finance Ministry took a great decision to impose an additional excise of Rs 2 for non-blended fuel. So now private companies will have to blend the fuel, which will increase the demand for ethanol. Within five years we will make the ethanol economy of Rs 2 lakh crore,” said the minister.

Green hydrogen

“We are also marching towards green hydrogen. There is a technology available for electrolysers. Within 15-20 days in Delhi, I am interested in starting a pilot project. We want to show people that it is possible to generate green hydrogen through sewage water. By using solar power and wind power, we will get green hydrogen. That green hydrogen, with the help of electrolyser, is already in Bengaluru, and a lot of start-ups are doing it. 90 per cent of electrolysers are being exported to other countries. So, there is a huge demand for electrolysers. We have decided to use that generator on bio-fuel, on ethanol. So, the green hydrogen will be available and it is the fuel of the future. Even in steel and chemical industries, in place of coal, we can use green hydrogen. In railway engines we can use green hydrogen,” he added. 

On Tesla

The minister said that the government is welcoming Tesla but they should start manufacturing in India. “If they want to manufacture in China and export to India then it is not good news for the country,” he said. 

Also read: Green hydrogen vs blue hydrogen: What's the difference?

Also read: ‘A Tesla car will cost Rs 35 lakh’: Nitin Gadkari 

Published on: Feb 18, 2022, 12:23 PM IST
Posted by: anwesha madhukalya, Feb 18, 2022, 12:17 PM IST