Amidst several incidents of fire in electric vehicles, NITI Aayog member and eminent scientist VK Saraswat has said that imported battery cells for electric vehicles may not be suitable for the conditions of the country and the cells locally Emphasized the need for the construction of
Saraswat’s remarks come at a time when officials are probing such incidents. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had recently said that all defective vehicles will be ordered to be recalled after the expert panel submits its report.
In the recent past, there have been several incidents of electric vehicles (EVs) catching fire and causing death as well as serious injuries.
“Battery technology is an emerging technology. India does not currently manufacture battery cells.
“…we should set up our own cell manufacturing plant at the earliest. We should ensure that all the cells we make are suitable for Indian conditions of high temperature,” Saraswat told PTI.
Saraswat is also the former chief of Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO). He said the fire could be due to poor quality of batteries which are not designed for high temperatures and tropical climates.
He said, “The (battery) cells that India is getting may not be suitable for Indian conditions… so it is important that when we import batteries, we have to do our own screening and rigorous testing system. Needed.”
He also noted that there are some countries that have developed batteries that can operate at higher temperatures.
Asked whether fire incidents could undermine India’s efforts to become a leader in EVs, Saraswat said, “What we are seeing is that the kind of accidents that are happening, it is definitely automobiles. There will be some impact on the entry of batteries in the area.”
Recently, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said that negligent companies will be punished and all defective vehicles will be ordered to be recalled after the expert panel submits its report.
Last month, the government had ordered a probe after an e-scooter launched by ride-hailing operator Ola’s electric mobility arm in Pune caught fire.
According to the ministry, the Center for Fire Explosive and Environment Safety (CFEES) has been asked to investigate the incidents of fire in electric vehicles and suggest protective measures.