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CESL to set up 810 EVC stations across 16 highways, and expressways in India

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Convergence Energy Services Limited (CESL) has announced that it will be setting up a total of 810 electric vehicle charging stations across 16 expressways and national highways of the country, covering more than 10,000 km of road.

The selected highways include Mumbai-Pune Expressway, Delhi-Agra Yamuna Expressway, Ahmedabad-Vadodara Highway, Eastern Peripheral Expressway, Agra-Nagpur Highway, Hyderabad ORR Expressway, and more. CESL will be using a service procurement model for the establishment of these charging stations. The exercise will involve private sector enterprises in developing the country's EV ecosystem. Under the project, private entities will invest in and operate these charging stations.

This bold step will help electric car consumers to take their cars out for long-haul journeys, whilst also creating the ground conditions for setting up other ancillary services to offer commuters. These charging stations are expected to be established in the next 6-8 months.

Putting up charging infrastructure on highways is part of the FAME-II scheme administered by the Ministry of Heavy Industries to promote and establish a network of e-highways across the country. These electric vehicle charging stations will be designed to cater to both private and public vehicles including ones on the roads today – such as Hyundai Kona, Tata Nexon EV, MG ZS EV & other compatible EVs, and e-buses. Providing fast DC connectors, CESL will install 590 chargers of 50kW capacity and 220 chargers of higher 100kW capacity.

The chargers with 50kW capacity will be available every 25 kilometres and the 100kW chargers every 100 kilometres. Customers will be able to access these charging stations through a mobile app which will provide information about nearby charging points, their availability, charger type, ability to schedule reservations/charge without reservations, charging tariff, and other types of information usually wanted by commuters. Customers can charge their EV at a charging station in approximately 40-50 minutes depending on the battery capacity of the vehicles.

This tender has achieved the Government's vision to blend subsidy with investment and encourage private investment in the charging stations business.

Commenting on this new move, CESL Managing Director and CEO, Ms. Mahua Acharya, said, "CESL is working to enable the participation of private enterprise and markets in building India's electric mobility ecosystem. The use of Government subsidies such as in FAME II allows such leverage to be achieved. I am thankful to for leadership of the Ministry of Heavy Industries and the Ministry of Power for framing suitable policies that set the foundation for us to design these business models. I hope we will be able to see all our roads with charging stations soon".

Elaborating further, Ms. Acharya said the feasibility of the park and charge facility to customers across all EV segments will also be explored as part of this initiative. The idea of establishing these charging stations is to reduce the electric vehicle range anxiety amongst consumers and encourage them to choose EVs for long-haul transport as well.

"We want to act as catalysts in India's energy transition journey and green mobility," Ms. Acharya stated. 

Author : Moulin Oza
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