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    IAMAI Suggests Adjustments to Delhi Transport Portal for Better Compliance

    In a letter to the government, the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) has appealed to “Extend the deadline for declaration of the vehicle fleet, revise provisions for low-speed EVs and bike taxis and align the Delhi transport department’s portal mandates with those of the Delhi Motor Vehicle Aggregator and Delivery Service Scheme, 2023.”

    What is the Delhi Motor Vehicle Scheme?

    The scheme is Delhi Transport’s most recent initiative to ease the pollution levels in the national capital. Introduced on November 29, 2023, the scheme directs all aggregators in transport, delivery service, e-commerce, etc. to transition towards EVs, even allowing two-wheeler taxis provided they are electric bikes.

    “On behalf of our members in the aggregator industry, we would like to share a few recommendations on the [Scheme] and the digital portal launched by the Delhi Government to facilitate and monitor the progress of the Scheme,” said the IAMAI, listing the following suggestions.

    Extend the deadline to declare the existing fleet:

    IAMAI asked that the current deadline of June 14, 2024, for declaring all existing fleets associated with an aggregator or delivery service provider be pushed back by at least two months. The association said aggregators will need more time to collect the required data to make such announcements.

    “Historically, delivery service providers have not been required to collect vehicle data. While delivery service providers are currently undertaking the exercise of getting the vehicle details and making efforts to ensure compliance, the response rate from gig workers is low. Therefore, further time will be required to ensure that all required details are collected,” the association informed.

    Further, an extension will also help address operational issues like the processing of gig worker documents and understanding the treatment of a learner’s license.

    Phased Electric Vehicle transition plan for bike taxis:

    IAMAI called for a phased Electric Vehicle transition plan for bike taxis, considering the unique challenges of integrating two-wheelers into passenger mobility.

    The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways on January 22 clarified that motorcycles fall within the definition of ‘contract carriage’ as per Section 2(7) of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, and advised states to accept and process applications for contract carriage permits for motorcycles accordingly.

    “This phase should allow for adequate time and resources for existing bike taxi operators to comply with the regulatory requirements while minimizing disruptions to their operations,” said the IAMAI.

    Need for declaration mechanism for low-speed EV bikes:

    The association urged the transport department to incorporate a mechanism on its portal to declare low-speed EV bikes a part of their ‘EV targets’. Currently, the portal does not allow such a declaration of low-speed bikes which in turn pushes the industry towards high-speed electric bikes which have a restricted supply and are much costlier – out of reach for most gig workers.

    “The portal, as it currently stands, will end up removing the very same gig workers who were first movers in EV adoption in Delhi,” it said.

    The industry body said that the first draft of the scheme did not disallow low-speed EVs which allowed many aggregators and delivery service providers to facilitate the transition from petrol bikes to affordable low-speed EVs.

    “Given the limited supply of high-speed EVs coupled with high churn in the platform economy, aggregators and delivery service providers will reasonably not be able to meet EV targets outlined in the Scheme without the inclusion of low-speed EVs,” said the IAMAI.

    Lastly, the exclusion of low-speed EVs will disincentivize investments in low-speed electric bikes which will impact micro-mobility options for sustainable transportation in Delhi. IAMAI argued that an inclusion and declaration mechanism on the portal will ensure Aggregators and Delivery Service Providers onboard all such vehicles.

    The Portal must align with the mandates of the Scheme:

    IAMAI noted that while the scheme mandates aggregators to transition to electrification mobility with the first set of targets within the first six months, the department portal requires the aggregator to meet EV targets every 14 days. Further, the aggregator is restricted from uploading more vehicles on the portal if the EV mandates are not met for every 14-day window.

    “This requirement to meet EV targets every 14 days (in divergence with the scheme) places an undue compliance burden on aggregators and financial burdens on drivers associated with such platforms (who will have to transition from ICE to electric vehicles),” said IAMAI.

    For this reason, it asked that the portal stay aligned with the policy and allow aggregators to meet EV targets at an aggregated level by the end of six months instead of mandating it every 14 days.

    Adjustment of off-boarded vehicles in new onboarded vehicles:

    IAMAI suggested that “any vehicle offboarded by the Transport Department or the aggregator may also be removed from the total incremental induction of vehicle so that EV mandates are applicable on the ‘adjusted total incremental induction.’

    Feedback from IAMAI members in the industry said that the portal only considers newly onboarded vehicles for the total number of incremental vehicles. Further, members pointed out that since there’s no mechanism to remove offboarded vehicles, EV mandates will be calculated against the “total number.” This raises problems of duplication of vehicle count and the application of EV mandates on the same vehicle multiple times.

    “This will lead to onerous EV mandate compliance for aggregators and goes above and beyond the EV targets set by the scheme,” said the IAMAI.

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    The post IAMAI Suggests Adjustments to Delhi Transport Portal for Better Compliance appeared first on MEDIANAMA.

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