Private Electric Vehicle charging stations for apartment residents

Private Electric Vehicle charging stations for apartment residents

7 October 2020
Petition to
Ministry of power (Office of Nitin Gadkari) and
Signatures: 2,842Next Goal: 5,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by Anand Vedula

Purpose of the petition : Residents of high-rise apartment societies are facing hurdles from management committees for setting up a 15Amp socket in their designated parking slots for charging their EVs. We need clear rules and guidelines from statutory authorities and ministries for setting up individual home charging stations for apartment residents.

Electric Vehicles are eco-friendly, sustainable and the future of mobility. Though electric vehicles exist for more than 100 years and even pre-date IC engines, it was never easy for people to buy and use them, and EVs were meant for highly enthusiastic people. Government of India is doing a great job in promoting EVs with subsidies under FAME1 and FAME2 policies. Thanks to the efforts, Electric Vehicles are now more affordable.

There are many hurdles for EV adaption and few of them are resolved.

1. High cost [Resolved] : Initial cost of any EV is higher compared to its IC counter part. With FAME subsidies, road tax exemptions, interest rate exemptions similar to housing loan, battery lease schemes, costs have come down. Higher initial cost is still a perception because running and maintenance cost is extremely low. Overall ownership of any EV for 5-8 years is much lower than petrol/diesel counter parts.

2. Range anxiety [Partially resolved]: Long charging time is a hassle. This limits the usage of EVs, only for short distance, mostly regular office commute or for buying groceries, etc. This problem is partially resolved through fast charging and charging infrastructure developed by government, companies like Hyundai, Tata, Mahindra and many startups like Ather energy.

3. Reliability [Resolved] : Getting service and spare parts was a problem till 2015-2016. This is no a problem anymore. EVs are more reliable now.

4. Home charging [Partially resolved] : Home charging is one of the biggest advantage of owning and EV. Plugin your EV to a regular home socket at night and it will be fully charged and ready for next day. If you live in an independent house or an apartment society with progressive mindset, this is not a problem. I live in an apartment society where the management committee is against EVs for some weird reasons best known to them. They don't allow residents to setup a socket in their own designated parking slots taking power from their own meter. It is a simple wire that runs from Point A (Output MCB of individual meter) to Point B (Individual parking slot)

Problem with my association :

My apartment association is not allowing me to run a wire from output of my individual meter to my designated parking slot for charging my EVs (E2O and Yobyke).

I have been visiting BESCOM and BBMP offices to get an NoC since January 2020 and there is no proper response. Different view points between Association, Me and BESCOM.

1. Boundaries of my apartment :

[Association] : Electricity is given to my apartment and extending it my parking slot is BESCOM violation.

[Me] : My parking slot is my registered property. Both, my apartment and parking slot are mentioned in Schedule C of my sale deed. And I am using it for charging my private EVs which is not a violation.

[BESCOM] : We don't have an objection for this, we encourage EVs but we cannot give it in writing. Sort it out with your association.

2. Sanctioned load :

[Association] : I have a sanctioned load and meter of 5KW. The sum of all the electrical equipment I have should not exceed 5KW. So, we cannot allow additional 15 Amp socket in your parking.

[Me] : I will not switch ON and use all the electrical equipment at same time. I will not use a geyser or washing machine when I am charging my EV. If the load exceeds sanctioned load at any time, my meter records it, my MCB will trip and I will pay the penalty to BESCOM. Association has nothing to do with it.

[BESCOM] : That is old and redundant rule, we don't have an objection for an additional 15 Amps socket in your parking area but we can't give this in writing.

3. Common area usage :

[Association] : The wire from individual meter to individual parking slot runs through common area. Association has full rights on common area and we will not allow any personal electric wire over common area. They turned blind eye to 100 other violations and hazards but that is a different issue.

[Me] : I will follow all safety norms. I will get the wiring done through a Class 1 BESCOM authorized contractor. I will either setup a cable tray or run wire through conduit pipes parallel to fire hydrant network and cabling networks. I will bear all the expenses.

[BESCOM] : We don't have an objection. Follow all safety norms. But we can't issue an NOC as we don't have a direction from ministry.

I showed a letter signed by AEE and AE (they advised me to follow safety norms) , informed committee and got the wiring done by my building electrician in February 2020. They gave me a notice in August 2020 and forcefully removed my wiring and socket.

They are insisting all current and future EV users to charge EVs at a common charging point provided by them at maintenance office on commercial "pay and charge" basis. This is definitely not sustainable model and discouraging residents to buy EVs.

What I need from this petition :. 

Putting all my research on EV policies, guidelines and government orders and relevant documents in chronological order. Rules are ambiguous and can be interpreted in different ways. I am looking for a clear rule which states that private charging is legal for apartment residents, management committee cannot deny it and guidelines for installing it. After talking to BESCOM officials, EV enthusiasts on social media, I understood many apartment residents are facing similar issues with their associations due to lac of clear rules and guidelines.

1. Karnataka Electric Vehicle & Energy Storage Policy 2017 dated 25-09-2017 :
Point no 5.2.(i) and 5.2.(j)
Amendments will be made to building bye-laws for providing charging infrastructure for EVs in all high rise buildings/ new SEZ / Technology Park / Apartments in the State.
Existing apartment associations will be encouraged to provide special dedicated plug/ charging station facilitating adoption of EVs by their members.
"special dedicated plug/ charging station" can be interpreted in two ways. I interpret it as private plug in private parking spot.

2. Clarification on charging infrastructure for Electric Vehicles with reference to the provisions for the Electricity Act, 2003 dated 13th April 2018 :
Point number 4 clearly states that we don't require any license to charge electric  vehicles doesn't require any license.

3. Charging Infrastructure for Electric Vehicles - Guidelines and Standards -reg dated 14th December 2018 :
"1. Private charging at residences / offices shall be permitted. DISCOMs may facilitate the same"
"3.4 The above minimum infrastructure requirements do not apply to Private Charging Points meant for self-use of individual EV owners (non-commercial basis)."
The public charging stations given at maintenance office must follow all the standards and rules as per the government order. Those rules doesn't apply for the private charging station which I have installed in my parking slot. Following safety guidelines in enough which I will do.

4. Amendments in Model Building Bye-Laws (MBBL - 2016) for Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure dated February, 2019 :
"10.4.2 All other buildings (including Group Housing) " This can be mis-interpreted as apartments cannot have private charging points. But if we further read, all the requirements are for PCS (commercial use).
Annexure 3, point no 4 again clearly says that minimum infrastructure requirements do no apply for Private Charging Points meant for self-use of individual owners (non-commercial basis).

5. Amendments in Urban and Regional Development Plans Formulation and Implementation Guidelines (URDPFI - 2014) for Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure dated February 2019 :
(same as link number 4). There is no where mentioned that apartments should have only public charging stations and private charging is not allowed in apartments.

6. Charging Infrastructure for Electric Vehicles (EV) -Revised Guidelines & Standards-reg dated 1st October 2019 :
"1. Private charging at residences / offices shall be permitted. Distribution Companies (DISCOMs) may facilitate the same"
"3.3 The above minimum infrastructure requirements do no apply to Private Charging Points meant for self-use of individual EV owners (non-commercial basis)" 

Thanks and Regards,

Anand Vedula

An aggravated resident of Shriram Samruddhi apartments, Thubarahalli, Bangalore

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Signatures: 2,842Next Goal: 5,000
Support now