Pradhan launches CNG-run bikes, BoM to finance 5k kits
Dharmendra Pradhan, the Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas, on Friday launched retro-fitted compressed natural gas (CNG) two-wheelers.
He launched the vehicles at an event organised by the Maharashtra Natural Gas Limited (MNGL) at Savitribai Phule Pune University.
Setting an initial target of 5,000 such two-wheelers to hit the roads soon, Pradhan said the cost of retrofitting them will be borne by the Bank of Maharashtra (BoM).
Each cylinder costs Rs15,500 over the cost of the vehicle. Of that, BoM will finance Rs12,000 interest-free.
“After Delhi and Mumbai, Pune is the third city to get CNG scooters. These scooters will prove very popular among youngsters as they are highly environmentally conscious and also eager to contribute towards a cleaner Pune,” the minister tweeted soon after the event.
Pune has a total of over 23 lakh two-wheelers and compared to that, 5,000 still seems like a small number. The city is also lagging in infrastructure, with only 50 CNG refuelling stations – although the number has doubled in the last eight years. Typically, typically it takes longer to fill CNG than it does to fill petrol and diesel.
Earlier, at a national conference on Ethanol in Bhosari, Pradhan had said the central government will soon formulate a green-fuel policy, with a focus on increasing the production of ethanol from alternative sources. This comes on the heels of recent toxic smog that had choked New Delhi for nearly 10 days.