This article on ‘Legal Requirements for opening an Electric Vehicle Charging Station (EVCS) in India‘ was written by Swaroopa Royadu, an intern at Legal Upanishad.
Electric vehicles (EVs) are vehicles with electric motors rather than internal combustion engines. The vehicle uses a battery pack to power the electric motor. This battery pack to power an electric motor requires a sufficient supply of electricity which is supplied from electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) that is, it needs to be charged by plugging into a wall outlet or charging equipment. This facility is provided by EV charging stations (EVCS). This article covers legal requirements for opening an electric vehicle charging stations in India and all the other aspects related to EVCS.
CURRENT SCENARIO OF ELECTRIC VEHICLES AND ELECTRIC VEHICLE STATIONS IN INDIA:
The government of India launched E-Amrit (Accelerated e-mobility Revolution for India’s Transportation), a web portal on electric vehicles on 10 November 2021. This portal provides all the information about electric vehicles, their benefits, and how to start an EV business. According to the e-Vahan portal, the number of electric vehicles in India in December 2021 was 8+ lakhs. Utter Pradesh, Delhi, Karnataka, Bihar, and Maharashtra are the few states in India that have widely adopted Electric vehicle usage in the state. India has about 900+ charging stations.
As the concept of an electric vehicle is new, and the number of electric stations is few, people are hesitant to buy electric vehicles in India, but as Electric vehicles are environmentally friendly and cause less pollution the central government of India has given various guidelines to boost EV charging stations in India.
LEGAL REQUIREMENTS FOR OPENING AN ELECTRIC VEHICLE CHARGING STATIONS IN INDIA:
Laws Regulating EVs and Electric Vehicle Charging Station (EVCS) in India
- “Guidelines and Regulations issued by the Ministry of Power to regulate Electric vehicles and electric vehicles station:
- Clarification on charging infrastructure for EVs with reference to the provisions of the Electricity Act,2003.
- Amendment in charging Infrastructure for EVs- the revised consolidated Guidelines and Standards Issued by the Ministry of Power.
- Charging Infrastructure for EV- the revised Consolidated Guidelines and Standards.
- Central Electric Authority (Technical Standards for connectivity of the Distributed Generation Resources) Regulation 2019.
- Central Electricity Authority (Measures relating to the safety and Electric Supply) Regulation 2019.
- Revised Guidelines and standards issued by the Ministry of Power under the Central Nodal Agency and State Nodal Agency.
- Guidelines and Regulations issued by other agencies
- Ministry of Housing and other Affairs
- FAME India (Faster Adoption and Manufacture of Electric vehicles)- by the department of Heavy Industries.
- Electric Vehicle policy issued by the state government.”
Who can open Electric Vehicle Charging Station in India?
Government-backed oil companies have taken responsibility to set up Electric Vehicle Charging Station (EVCS). In order to implement faster development of Electric Vehicle Charging Station (EVCS) in India, Government is providing opportunities to its citizens to start Electric Vehicle Charging Station (EVCS) businesses and to set up EV stations in their areas. Thus, any individual can start EVCS.
How to start an Electric Vehicle Charging Station?
One can set up EVCS at home/office or it can have set up in a public area for public use. In order to start an EVCS business, one has to consider or understand the following:
The working of EV chargers and types of EV chargers:
In simple words, equipment that is used to plug in the vehicle to supply electricity is called EV chargers or electric vehicle supply equipment. The main function of these chargers is to supply the required amount of electricity to EVs. There are 2 types of chargers: –
- AC (Alternating current): usually suitable for house/office setup as AC chargers supply less charge and their charging capacity is also slow.
- DC (Direct current): usually suitable for public setup or public use as DC chargers charge super-fast compared to AC chargers.
Government policies and regulations:
Some of the attractive government policies include:
- The person who wants to start EVCS does not require to have the license to start the same.
- The government has made it mandatory to provide an electrical connection very quickly which will be within 7 days in metro cities, 15 days in municipal areas, and 30 days in rural areas.
- The energy can be sourced from any of the available service providers, no restrictions are laid by the government.
- The person who wants to start EVCS can use any of the chargers available in the market with the only criteria that they should meet the technical standards as well as safety standards guided by the government.
- To have speedy work during and after set up it is required to have at least one online network service provider for all online-related work including booking slots for charging, making payments, etc.
Determining the land and location to start the business:
- one can decide the size of the land and location for EVCS setup by considering the type of EVs to be charged, by considering the number of charging piles, space for vehicle movement and parking, proper entry and exit for vehicles, etc.
Understanding the charging infrastructure:
The infrastructure for EVCS should be according to the guidelines (14/January/2022) laid down by the ministry of power. Some of the public charging requirements include:
- An exclusive transformer that includes substation equipment.
- Proper civil work, cable, and electrical works with necessary safety measures.
- Proper space for vehicle entry and exit
- Fire protection equipment and many more.
Vehicles are considered one of the biggest contributors to air pollution, so the use of EVs will help in the reduction of air pollution. As EVs have zero tailpipe emissions they are much more suitable to protect the environment. The running cost and maintenance costs of EVs are also less. Registration fees and road tax for EVs are also less compared to petrol and diesel vehicles. Various subsidiaries are given by the government to increase the use of EVs in India. Because of these reasons, there is a high chance for the growth and usage of Electric Vehicles in the future in India. Hence there is a wider scope for Electric Vehicle charging station business.
- Electric Vehicle, Ministry of Power, available at: https://powermin.gov.in/en/content/electric-vehicle
- Amendments in Model Building Bye-Laws (MBBL – 2016) for Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, available at: https://mohua.gov.in/upload/whatsnew/5c6e472b20d0aGuidelines%20(EVCI).pdf
- Rakesh Ranjan, Read more at Ministry of Power Issues Revised Guidelines for EV Charging Infrastructure, Mercom India, 18 January 2022, available at: https://mercomindia.com/ministry-of-power-guidelines-ev-charging-infrastructure/