• Site Last Updated on Saturday 19 August 2017, 12:22:42 IST
Bhavish Aggarwal, CEO and Co-founder at Ola, with India's first multimodal electric fleet

Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister, Government of Maharashtra and Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport, Highways and Shipping, Government of India inaugurated India’s first multi-modal electric vehicle project at the Nagpur Airport Complex.

This unique project will bring vehicles across different segments, including e-buses, e-cabs, e-rickshaws and e-autos together on a single platform, the Ola app, enabling citizens of Nagpur to book these vehicles for their transportation needs. This pilot project will commence with a 200-strong fleet, including 100 of Mahindra’s new e2o Plus vehicles. The rest of the fleet will consist of vehicles sources from other OEMs including Tata Motors, Kinetic, BYD, TVS amongst others.

Devendra Fadnavis and Nitin Gadkari flagged off this all-electric fleet from the Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport in the presence of key dignitaries – Diwakar Raote, (Transport Minister, Government of Maharashtra), Abhay Damle (Joint Secretary, MoRTH), Manoj Saunik (Principal Secretary, Transport Government of Maharashtra), Satish Sahasrabudhe, (Additional Commissioner, Transportation, Government of Maharashtra) and thousands of citizens. This was followed by the unveiling of Ola’s electric charging station, situated within the airport complex. This unique installation is the first of its kind and will power the fleet. Ola has already invested upward of INR 50 cr towards EVs and charging infrastructure, starting with 50+ charging points across 4 strategic locations in the city of Nagpur. With a clear focus to build a full fledged ecosystem around sustainable mobility, Ola will also invest in training and educating driver partners on maintenance and use of in-car technology along with its key OEM partners like Mahindra.

Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis said, “The state of Maharashtra is geared towards driving positive change for collective improvement of the society we live in, and we welcome and encourage such initiatives. We are extremely proud of the commitment corporations like Ola, Mahindra and others are working towards building sustainable transportation for all. In support of this initiative, we have waived off VAT, road tax, and registration for all electric vehicles in the state, and we look forward to building Maharashtra as a model state for others to emulate in the future.”

Union Minister of Road Transport, Highways and Shipping, Nitin Gadkari said, “There is an urgent need to re-think and revisit transport infrastructure and fuel dependency, not just in India, but globally. Large scale adoption of electric vehicles can bring the monumental change that we urgently need, and in this endeavour, we launched the 100% EV nation by 2030 mission. It is heartening to see Indian companies such as Ola and Mahindra taking Government’s vision forward and in building a strong ecosystem for sustainable mobility. I look forward to working with them to make the 2030 vision a reality.”

Bhavish Aggarwal, Co-Founder and CEO, Ola said, “India has the need as well as the potential to set a global example on electric adoption to power its mobility needs. We are excited about how this could transform the mobility experience for millions of citizens, unlock immense opportunity for driver partners and positively impact the environment and quality of life in our cities. The government has been extremely supportive towards kick-starting this initiative and we look forward to working with them and the various industry partners in building the electric vehicle ecosystem grounds up for India. We believe that Electric Mobility in a multi-modal format, will be key towards realizing our mission of building mobility for a billion Indians.”

Dr. Pawan Goenka, Managing Director, Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd. said, “As the pioneers of electric vehicles in India we are delighted to enable first sustainable shared mobility service in Nagpur, along with the Government of India and Ola. I would like to applaud the Government for its novel mission of accelerating large scale adoption of electric vehicles and Ola for making ‘Green mobility services’ accessible to the people of Nagpur. True to the spirit of ‘Make-in-India’, we shall lead this change in India along with the Government. This pilot will pave the wave for wider adoption of electric vehicles. I am confident that India will make a paradigm shift in lifestyles - towards smart mobility and smart cities that are driven by progressive Government policies.”

Sulajja Firodia Motwani, Founder and CEO of Kinetic Green Energy and Power Solutions Ltd., said, “As India's largest electric three wheeler maker, we are excited to be partnering in this initiative with Ola by supplying 100 of our superior e-rickshaws, Kinetic Safar in Phase 1. These e-rickshaws will play a key part in providing seamless e-mobility at Nagpur, especially for last mile connectivity and for affordable short distance travel. Kinetic Safar has superior safety features, better design and feature advanced lithium ion batteries. We are keen to bring our offerings to the city of Nagpur on the Ola platform.”

Electric vehicles will play a major role in reducing urban pollution plaguing several Indian cities and resulting in health hazards. With increased penetration of EVs and eventual 100% transition, the country and its citizens stand to benefit tremendously.

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