On Wednesday 29th of March 2017, the Supreme Court issued an order that the BS-III vehicle will not sale after March 31, 2017, only BS-IV compliant vehicles will be sold by auto companies. The bench was headed by Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta. This is a big shock to auto companies, because automotive industry has around 8.5 lakh unsold vehicle with BS-III engines in stock, included 96,724 of commercial vehicles, 6,71,308 of two-wheelers, 40,048 of three-wheelers and 16,198 passenger vehicles. The estimated cost of these BS-III vehicles is around Rs 12,000 crore. Auto companies have admitted there is no possibility to make old stocks into BS-IV compliant, so they have no option but to export the vehicles or turn them to scrap.
Automotive heavy discount on vehicles:
That’s why the auto companies have announced a heavy discount on two-wheelers upto Rs. 22,000 and Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 1 Lakh on cars to clear of old stocks. Because, as per the new rule, even though no BS-III vehicles can be sold after March 31, all vehicles sold until then will be registered even in April. The Auto companies 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. The apex court rejected auto companies plea over the demand for relief of six to seven months. Auto Manufactures had approached the Supreme Court to dispose of their stock as the BS-IV emission norms are to come into force from April 1 this year.
Mr. A M Singhvi, Senior advocate, appearing for SIAM (Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers), told the bench that the companies were committed to follow the emission norms and had already started making BS-IV compliant vehicles but they should be allowed to dispose off the existing stocks which could be done in the next 7-8 months.
Advocate Aprajita Singh, who is assisting the court as amicus curaie, contended that old vehicles, if allowed to sell, would ply on the road for the next 10-15 years and would contribute to already deteriorating air quality. She said that companies were well aware about teh deadline but they continued manufacturing BS-III vehicles and they should not be allowed to dispose off such polluting vehicle.