English summary- Chitralekha Gujarati issue dated 24 September 2018

With Electric Cars, Fuel Woes Will Be Over

While the fuel for toxic fumes-emitting vehicles is becoming increasingly dangerous with each passing day, the government of India has offered a hope by preparing many projects for electrically-operated vehicles. It is expected that in the next five years e-cars will account for 15 percent in vehicular traffic. And in next 10 to 12 years, we may be able to bid a goodbye to petrol/ diesel vehicles, if everything works out favourably. Among other benefits, this will mean a huge saving of Rs 2 lakh crore annually. In this latest cover story in Chitralekha, Samir Karambe examines the future of e-cars in India.

Recently, Maharastra government has ordered for 25 cars for inclusion in their motor cavalcade. Meant for use by ministers, these cars include Mahindra E-Verito and Tata Tigor model and their speciality is that they make no sound nor do they emit fumes. They run not on fuel but on electricity and are therefore environment-friendly. Earlier, Thane Mahapalika had procured a few electric buses. Today, the BEST services have six electric and 25 hybrid buses, the latter being equipped to run both on electricity as well as fuel.

In Delhi and Nagpur, e-buses and e-rickshaws are not new. These e-rickshaws are now a familiar sight in some cities in the North, too. In Bangalore and Delhi, private taxi companies like Zoom and Lithium have pressed e-cars for public service. While assuring that there is no need to wait for 10 long years, the Surface Transport minister Nitin Gadkari says in next 2-3 years, the number of e-cars will outnumber those running on fuel and diesel.

Going by the 2015 vehicular data, in India, there are over 15 crore vehicles registered and the figure keeps spiralling every year. As these vehicles emit deadly fumes polluting the atmosphere, they are apparently instrumental in contributing to the high casualties figure reported every year. It is estimated that nearly 12 lakh people die because of air pollution.

Besides contaminating the environment, these fuel vehicles burn a big hole in consumers’ pockets, with ever-rising price of fuel. This is where e-cars can step in and play a positive role as it can check on air pollution besides helping make us a substantial saving. The central government has drawn up a Mobility Mission Plan under which e-cars are now moving in cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad and Nagpur.

The story cites top ministry officials who inform us that Mobility Mission Plan under the energy ministry promotes e-cars in India. Companies like Mahindra and Tata have been given contracts for manufacturing cars for this purpose. The government procured 6000 cars from them at rates 35 percent cheaper than the market. They will make technical modifications in them and then supply to Delhi, Rajasthan, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra after entering into agreements with them.

After Delhi, Maharashtra became the first state to have procured e-cars, thanks to the prompt action taken by the state government. Some ministries of Maharashtra government have been using e-cars they have obtained on rent from the Energy Efficiency Services (EESL) set up by the Central government in 2013. Monthly maintenance of each car including a driver costs Rs 40,000 whereas fuel cars cost the exchequer Rs 60000. At this rate, if all vehicles of Maharashtra government are replaced with e-cars, just imagine the whopping saving it will generate.

Also, procuring 100 cars at a time may mean spending an astronomical amount, therefore getting these cars on rent made immense sense. Even their maintenance is taken care of by EESL. Soon, they will arrange for charging points at all government parking lots. In a very near future, similar cars will be made available for private organizations and the general public. It is estimated that if around 10 companies agree to make e-cars, its cost can be brought down to Rs. 6-7 lakh instead of 10-12 lakh.

There are two boxed pieces that complete the story. One is by Samir Paleja who probes as to who killed e-cars and why. The second piece is on hassles involved in charging these cars.

Eco-Friendly Ganesh

As the much-awaited Ganesh Chaturthi is here, Nilesh Karanje introduces us to Vishal Shinde, an artist known for creating eco-friendly idols of Ganesh. Especially the artist’s penchant for making idols of child-swroop of Ganeshji has caught fancy of many worshippers.

There are two aspects to the sculptor’s art: he always insists on using clay for making Ganesh idols thereby serving the environment. Secondly, he makes sure his creations are theme-based.

His Trimurti Arts has ensured that this sacred art of sculpturing is also successful on the professional front, the story points out.

Nasser Manji: A Finance Guru

Instrumental in the birth of two premier financial institutions, Nasser Manji made one bank viable and financially stable. Heading the Agha Khan Rural Support Program that runs several rural welfare projects, Nasser also contributes to developing the Jazz music culture in India. Incidentally, it was he who had organized the first-ever Jazz festival in India.

Hiren Mehta profiles the graduate from the London School of Economics who has emerged over the years as a finance guru par excellence. Under his leadership, no village under the Agha Khan Rural Support Program ever faces water scarcity.

The issue also carries a follow-up story (by Sunil Mevada and Jitendra Radadiya) on India’s achievements at the recently-concluded Asian Games, with a special focus on two girls Ankita Raina and Nina Varakil who represented Gujarat and did the state proud by winning medals.

Besides, Jayesh Chitaliya in his Vyapar Vishwa, examines the factors behind the free fall of rupee vis a vis dollars and its impact on Indian economy, while Himanshu Kikany advises ways on how to keep your data secure on WhatsApp.

The issue also carries Political & Humour columns, Palak, Cardiogram, novel’s new chapter, Priyadarshini, Jalsaghar and Mukhwas.

Ishita’s Elchi

Money is known to ruin as well as rescue us. But for this, it is not the money, but we who are responsible..!!

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