Maharashtra to have clean fuel public transport fleet soon: Devendra Fadnavis
Nitin Gadkari in a recent conference expressed confidence that green fuel will end the need for petrol in India after five years. Having said that, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that Maharashtra aims to be the first state in the country where all public transport buses run on clean fuels.
Without sharing a timeline of when he sees the transformation of the fleet happening, Fadnavis said big cities like Mumbai and Pune already have electric buses. “In the coming days, it will be our endeavour to ensure that public transport will not have any conventional fuel at all. We have already made a start with big cities in the state where transportation systems are being turned to clean systems,” Fadnavis said at an event organised by the Union Ministry of Culture and industry lobby CII here.
Fadnavis, who has been the chief minister of the state for a full five-year term in the past, said the state-run Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation will also be starting to replace the fuel source for its fleet soon.
Speaking at the maiden public outing for him and Chief Minister Eknath Shinde since taking oath last week, Fadnavis said a switch to EVs will help India achieve its overall environmental targets and also develop the electric vehicle ecosystem in the state.
He also said politics sometimes meddle in infrastructure creation like the Metro rail project in the financial capital but made it clear that the government wants to fasten the pace of work and complete it on time.
Admitting that Maharashtra has lagged in progress on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project, Fadnavis said efforts will be made to expedite the same. Shinde said he and his deputy are currently thinking about reducing the value-added tax (VAT) on fuels, as done by some other states.
He said multinationals are opening shop along the upcoming Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi Mahamarg and claimed that farmers of the state will stop committing suicides once the highway along with 20 dedicated nodes for industry gets operational.
Shinde also spoke about a meeting of the national authority on industrial corridors chaired by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and affirmed support for building dedicated corridors between Mumbai and other cities like Delhi, Bengaluru, and Nagpur, and also parks for bulk drugs, textiles, and medical devices.
Speaking at the same event, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari pointed to the sugarcane production in the state and urged the newly-installed state government to also work on alternative fuels like ethanol.
(With inputs from PTI)