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After Maha, Telangana, Cong chief Sidhu invites Tesla CEO Elon Musk,wants Ludhiana to be EV Hub

By Priyanka Verma 
Updated Date

Punjab : After Telangana and Maharashtra, Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu on Sunday invited Tesla CEO Elon Musk to set up manufacturing units in the state. He said the ‘Punjab model’ will create Ludhiana as hub for electric vehicles and battery industry with time bound single window clearance for investment.

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Quoting a Tweet which was earlier made by Musk, Sidhu said, “I invite @elonmusk, Punjab Model will create Ludhiana as hub for Electric Vehicles & Battery industry with time bound single window clearance for investment that brings new technology to Punjab, create green jobs, walking path of environment preservation & sustainable development.”

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The Tesla CEO earlier this week said he was still working through a lot of challenges with the government for setting up manufacturing units for its electric cars in India. “Still working through a lot of challenges with the government,” Musk had tweeted replying to a Twitter user who asked about update on Tesla’s India business plan.

The governments of Telangana and Maharashtra have already invited Musk to set up Tesla manufacturing units in their respective states.

Earlier in the day, Maharashtra State Water Resources Minister and State NCP chief Jayant Patil invited Musk to visit the state.

Telangana Industry and Commerce Minister KT Rama Rao was the first to invite Musk after Tesla CEO put out that tweet suggesting challenges in getting clearance in India.Rao said he would be “happy to partner Tesla in working through the challenges”. “Hey Elon, I am the Industry & Commerce Minister of Telangana state in India. Will be happy to partner Tesla in working through the challenges to set shop in India/Telangana. Our state is a champion in sustainability initiatives & a top notch business destination in India,” Rama Rao said replying to Elon Musk tweet.

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Previously, Musk had urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to cut down on import taxes on EVs before the company enters the Indian market, as told to Reuters. In fact, India has a customs duty ranging between 60 per cent to 100 per cent on imported cars.

Musk also said that taxes in India are among the highest in the world, and hence, wanted them cut before there could be an entry into the Indian EV market. This invited the ire of a lot of Indian automobile manufacturers, who felt that this may discourage investment in local manufacturing.

Furthermore, Musk-owned Tesla had received approval for three more trims of its electric vehicles in India, bringing the total to seven versions approved in the country, media reports said. Tesla India received approval for three more vehicles in the country, citing information from the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Teslarati reported earlier.

In August 2021, Tesla received homologation certificates for four of its car models. With three more certificates, the electric vehicle maker now has seven vehicles approved in India. The precise Tesla variants that received approval have not been specified. However, there have been sightings of Model 3s and Model Ys on Indian roads, the report said.

The latest three vehicles with homologations certificates have not been named either, it added. A few Tesla test units have been regularly navigating through local roads in India. Still, the US-based EV maker has yet to make any serious moves toward local production.

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Earlier this year, Musk noted that a Tesla factory in India might be possible if Tesla were to succeed with imported vehicles. As per the report, some sources stated that Tesla requested to reduce the import duties of vehicles sent to India by at least 40 per cent, which could help the US company test demand in the country. However, governing officials stated that there is zero chance for a single company, like Tesla, to receive specific incentives.

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