Adding Fuel to the Fire
The last two months have been very difficult for all of us on account of the second wave of the pandemic which has forced the state government to enforce a lockdown with a view to bring down the number of cases that had crossed the 60,000 per day mark in the state. Despite all the headwinds, we have been able to bring out the issue for this month.
The fuel prices did not go up for a month just before the state elections. Once the elections were over, though, those prices have begun going up nearly every day and have breached the Rs 100 per litre mark in the state. The cost of diesel has crossed the Rs 90 mark. This is a time when the people of the country have been forced to cope with loss of jobs and income and here we are paying more and more for our fuel, which, in turn, is pushing the price of everything northwards, be it grocery or other essential commodities. The story is no different in the case of bikes, for most manufacturers are increasing the prices of new bikes.
Every two days we get a call from a PR agency saying that there is a new start-up company making an electric scooter. The market is awash with new electric scooters. People with no clue about two-wheeler manufacturing and far less automotive nous, seem to be getting into the business of electric scooter and motorcycle manufacture. The quality of these products is really poor as there is hardly any testing. How they get their certification is something that just beats us.
Yes, given the spiralling cost of fuel and taking into consideration the vital aspect of emission, we do need to move towards EVs, but we need products of good quality that will last, otherwise we will end up with a big heap of scrap.