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In a major relief for car makers in India, the Central government has come out in its support urging the Supreme Court to allow the manufactures to sell their remainingstock of BS-III vehicles post the April 1 deadline after which the BS-IV norms will come into effect. Currently, the Supreme Court is hearing pleas of automobile firms which have sought permission for disposing of around 8.24 lakh BS-III vehicles which are being held in stock.

Car manufactures have approached the apex court to dispose of their stock as the BS-IV emission norms are to come into force from April 1 this year.

The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) had submitted data on manufacturing and sale of BS-III vehicles on a monthly basis from January 2016 and told the court that the companies were holdingstock of around 8.24 lakh such vehicles, including 96,000 commercial vehicles, over 6 lakh two-wheelers and around 40,000 three-wheelers. The estimated worth of these BS-III vehicles is around Rs 12,000 crore.

The manufacturers told the court that they were allowed to sell their stocks with old emission norms on previous two occasions when the industry had switched to BS-II and BS-III in 2005 and 2010.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor urged the government to put in place a framework to phase out old BS-I and BS-II vehicles, amidst ambiguity over enforcement of BS-IV emission norms across the country.

“We would urge the government also to put in place an enabling framework to phase out BS-I and BS-II vehicles. All our vehicles currently being sold in India are BS-IV compliant,” Toyota Kirloskar Motor said in a statement.

On other hand, Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV) said BS-III vehicles should not be allowed to sell in the country after April 1, the deadline for switch to BS-IV norms, as it is already scaling down such vehicles.

Erich Nesselhauf, Managing Director and CEO, Daimler India Commercial Vehicles said, “Selling BS3 vehicles should not be allowed after April 1, or at least the sales of those vehicles should be penalised in order to set off the additional cost and environment burden society has to absorb.”

In July, 2016, Indian Oil Corp-owned Gujarat refinery had said that they will supply Bharat Stage(BS)-IV compliant diesel from January 2017.

S K Dhar Gupta, Executive Director, Indian Oil Corp had said, “For producing BS-IV complaint fuel, IOC is spending Rs 1,800 crore towards revamping its three diesel treating and hydro-treating units at Gujarat Refinery.”

Of the total monthly petrol production of 1.60 lakh tonnes, the refinery is currently supplying about 1.50 lakh to 1.55 lakh tonnes of BS-IV compliant petrol, he had said.

The refinery, which has 13.7 MMT crude processing capacity, has been revamping all its units to supply BS-IV fuels throughout the country by April 1, 2017.cotonou-cars (1)