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MHI denies clean chit to Hero Electric, Okinawa, Benling for violating FAME-II guidelines

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In Short:

The enquiry found that Hero Electric, Okinawa Autotech, and Benling India were not following the government guidelines for electric vehicles. They were fined huge amounts for violating FAME-II norms. The investigation started in 2022 after complaints were received. Some companies returned the subsidies, but Hero Electric, Okinawa, and Benling did not. Now, a new committee is investigating the matter further.

Electric Vehicle Makers Found Flouting FAME-II Norms

Imagine being a part of an investigation that uncovers some shocking revelations about three major electric vehicle (EV) makers – Hero Electric Vehicles Pvt Ltd., Okinawa Autotech Pvt Ltd., and Benling India Energy and Technology Pvt Ltd.. Well, the truth is out and it’s not looking good for them. The investigation has revealed that they were not playing by the rules set under the Faster Adaption of Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles (FAME-II) scheme. No clean chit for them yet!

According to sources at MHI, a new Committee led by the Additional Secretary, MHI, has been digging into this issue for quite some time now. They have concluded that these companies were not abiding by the government guidelines and now they need to pay up in penalties. Ouch!

As per the penalty imposed by the government, Hero Electric is facing a penalty of ₹133.8 crore, Okinawa Autotech ₹116.85 crore, and Benling India ₹48.42 crore. That’s a hefty sum to pay for not following the rules.

Dismissing Clean Chit Rumors

Just when some reports were suggesting that these companies had been given a clean chit, the truth comes out in the open. The investigation has painted a different picture altogether.

Uncovering the Investigation

It all started back in 2022 when complaints started pouring in about violations of the FAME-II scheme. The Ministry of Heavy Industries (MHI) took notice and launched an inquiry into 13 companies. Out of these, six companies, including the three aforementioned ones along with Ampere Vehicles, AMO Mobility, Lohia Auto, and Revolt, were found guilty of flouting the norms. Big fines were imposed totaling ₹469 crore.

While some companies like AMO Mobility, Greaves Electric Mobility, and Revolt returned the subsidies with interest, Hero Electric, Okinawa, and Benling didn’t comply and were eventually deregistered for availing the subsidies under FAME. Tough consequences for not following the rules!

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