Switching on its entire fleet of official vehicles, as electrical, Himachal Pradesh State Transport Department has achieved the distinction of becoming the first such department in the country to switch over to electrical vehicles (EVs). Adopting the ‘Go Green’ approach, the Directorate of Transport has replaced the official petrol and diesel vehicles with electric ones.
Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, congratulating the State Transport Department on Friday, said that Himachal has taken a lead in switching over to electrical vehicles and notified its policy, whereas some states of the country are in the final stage for implementing the same.
The motive to start these e-vehicles was to curtail unnecessary expenditure on petroleum products besides preserving the state's pristine environment. All the Government departments will be equipped with electrical vehicles within a year, said the Chief Minister, adding that EV Policy-2022 has also been notified.
We will completely transform the existing diesel buses with e-buses in a phased manner, said the Chief Minister, adding that the local bus depot of Shimla will soon have full fleet e-buses.
An electric bus depot will also be opened in Nadaun as well and the e-buses will soon run on all the local routes in Shimla, he said, adding that 300 e-buses will be added to the fleet of HRTC for which an outlay of Rs 400 crore has been sanctioned.
In the coming two years, a target of 60 percent e-buses will be added to the fleet of HRTC. The Chief Minister said that we are working towards making Himachal as India's first 'Green Energy State' by 2025. At present, about 33 crore vehicles are registered in the country and about 21 lakh vehicles are registered in Himachal.
The Government is also mulling to make Parwanoo-Nalagarh-Una-Hamirpur-Nadaun-Dehra highway as ‘Clean and Green’ corridor. Apart from this, the e-buses will soon run on Shimla-Rampur corridor, he said, adding that the rest of the routes in the State will be provided e-buses in a phased manner in next three to four years, which will minimize both noise and air pollution.
The HRTC has been in loss since the last few years. Switching over to electrical vehicles will be a step forward to minimize the cost of transportation and will be affordable to all.
The electrical Charging Stations will be set up in a phased manner for which around 110 places along the four lanes, national and state highways have been identified. Besides, 700 government buildings have been selected to set up the electric charging stations.