NEW DELHI: India has led a united fight against COVID-19 and the economy is firmly on the road to recovery, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Monday.
Addressing a virtual event hosted by industry body CII, Gadkari also urged companies to vaccinate their employees, saying it was their social responsibility.
“Under the leadership of our Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we have been strong, resilient and we have fought together to fight the Covid pandemic.
“I am optimistic that the worst is behind us and as you would have observed from several economic indicators and reports, we are firmly on the road to economic recovery,” he said.
The Minister of Road Transport and Highways further stated that the government’s goal is to reduce diesel import spending and prevent dangerous air pollution.
“The cost of diesel is almost Rs 100 per liter today, which weighs on entrepreneurs and developers,” he said.
The Minister pointed out that in India, the road sector accounts for about 45 percent of the demand for construction equipment.
He noted that the government is very open, flexible and supportive of the construction equipment industry to work together on the prescribed roadmap with particular emphasis on alternative fuels.
Gadkari also pointed out that India is an electricity surplus country and that electricity produced by solar energy can ensure zero carbon emissions and huge savings in construction activities.
“We can generate 81% of the value of lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles in India.
“In addition, I am continuing research for its substitute such as aluminum-ion, zinc-ion, sodium-ion batteries. BharatBenz has already launched electric trucks in India,” he said.
Gadkari also said that LNG as a fuel is economically viable for trucks and long-haul buses.
“The economy is so good that the conversion cost is Rs 10 Lakh, which can be recouped in 295 days, averaging 5 km per hour,” he said.
Gadkari urged manufacturers to innovate and design construction equipment vehicles that can run on LNG.
“It is the fuel of the future … We can also convert LNG by compressing it into CNG, which is suitable and economically viable for a range of 200 to 250 km, while LNG is good for a range of 1,000 km, “he said. .
Gadkari said the government is investing $ 1.4 trillion, or 111 lakh crore, in developing world-class infrastructure through the National Infrastructure Pipeline.
“We have set ourselves the goal of building roads worth Rs 15 lakh crore over 2 years,” he said.
Gadkari also said the government is working to strengthen MSMEs to help develop an internal auxiliary industry and reduce dependence on imports.
He said he was convinced that the digitization and automation of the construction equipment industry would increase its efficiency.
Stating that he is aware of industry concerns about rising prices for key raw materials, Gadkari said the rollout of the vehicle scrapping policy will make a huge amount of scrap metal available for use. companies.
He also urged the construction equipment industry to find alternatives to steel and reduce its use to cope with soaring commodity prices.
Alluding to the significant need for a skilled workforce to operate advanced construction equipment and machinery, the Minister proposed to industry to support the design of a skills-based training structure for the industry. , because this sector offers enormous employment potential.

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