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    Nepal Unveils Its First Electric Vehicle

    EnvironmentNepal Unveils Its First Electric Vehicle
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    Nepal Unveils Its First Electric Vehicle

    The preliminary version of the eco-friendly two-wheeler was launched on Thursday. The scooter’s electric battery can sustain its run for 50 kilometres upon a complete charging.

    The Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) today unveiled the country’s first ever indigenously developed vehicle.

    The vehicle, an electric scooter, has been developed in collaboration with the provincial government of the Lumbini Province.

    The preliminary version of the eco-friendly two-wheeler was launched on Thursday by Nepal’s Minister for Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, Pampha Bhusal.

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    The scooter’s electric battery can sustain its run for 50 kilometres upon a complete charging. This also means that there will have to be enough charging stations to promote the use of electric vehicles in the country. The Nepal Electricity Authority has undertaken the construction of 50 charging stations across the country.

    Named ‘Sarathi’, the design of the prototype cost NAST a mere Nepali Rs 300,000.

    The development is viewed as significant for the country that has been dependent on importing vehicles from its two rather industrialised neighbours – India and China – and from elsewhere in the world.

    Besides, the electric scooter is also welcome in a hydro-electricity rich country that would like to save its foreign expenditures on fossil fuels.

    The development is also appropriate, given Nepal’s road system and its geography.

    Another EV launch

    Nepal’s quest for electric vehicles got another push today with the country’s biggest business house, the Chaudhary Group, announcing its foray into electric vehicles.

    In a tweet posted today, the group’s managing director, Nirvana Chaudhary announced the establishment of CG Motors with the tagline ‘Join The Revolution’, announcing the “world’s most anticipated EV – coming to Nepal”.

    The tweet does not reveal any information about the upcoming EV brand. But it is believed that CG Motors will introduce Neta (Nezha), the EV brand owned by the Chinese all-electric car company, Hozon Auto owned by the Zhejiang Hezhong New Energy Automobile Company.

    Homegrown technology

    At the announcement of the NAST electric scooter, Minister Bhusal asked NAST to advise the government on whether the country needs to introduce internationally available technology or to develop a homegrown technology for the automotive industry. She also urged NAST to explore whether or not power storage was possible, given the country predicament in winters when hydroelectric production drops.

    NAST Vice-Chancellor Sunil Babu Shrestha said, with some pride, that the innovation would silence doubters who felt that the country’s academics failed to deliver research-based results.

    According to Shrestha, the achievement paves the way for commercial production of electric scooters in Nepal.

    The Nepali innovation is a nascent one – electric vehicle covering 1,000 kilometres on a single full charge are now a norm and Nepal’s immediate neighbours, India and China are miles ahead in the manufacturing of electric vehicles. Besides, Nepal has been a market for automobiles from these two neighbours.

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