Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, delivered a compelling vision for India’s energy independence, emphasizing a transformative shift away from petrol and diesel imports. Speaking at the ‘Sagar Manthan’ conclave organized by the RSS-affiliated publication Panchjanya in Goa, Gadkari articulated a profound perspective on steering India towards self-reliance in energy.
Highlighting the economic impact of fuel imports, Gadkari underscored that India’s current import bill for petroleum stands at a staggering Rs 16 lakh crore. He outlined a roadmap towards reducing this dependency by embracing cost-effective, eco-friendly, and indigenous alternatives, asserting that redirecting this substantial capital could significantly benefit the country’s impoverished populace.
Gadkari reflected on a conversation with former RSS sarsanghchalak K S Sudarshan, who linked the problem of global terrorism to the reliance on imported petrol, diesel, and fossil fuels. “Terrorism,” Sudarshan remarked, “will persist until this import ceases.” Gadkari reiterated this sentiment, stressing that putting an end to this reliance is pivotal in curbing terrorism worldwide.
Advocating for alternative fuels, Gadkari highlighted the proactive initiatives undertaken by farmers, such as producing ethanol from sugarcane juice, molasses, bamboo, food grains, and rice straw. He personally advocates this approach, driving a car fueled by ethanol, championing the use of biofuel and alternative energy sources.
Expressing his mission, Gadkari asserted, “My life’s purpose is to challenge the dominance of petrol and diesel.” He envisioned a future where India would attain a significant milestone: complete independence from these traditional fuels, signifying a paradigm shift in the nation’s energy landscape.
The minister disclosed the government’s ongoing efforts to reduce the cost of hydrogen, foreseeing a future where vehicles, including cars, trucks, and buses, would operate on hydrogen-based fuel.
Joining the discourse, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant addressed concerns about the potential closure of Dabolim airport following the operationalization of the Manohar International Airport in Mopa. Sawant assured the public, affirming, “Dabolim airport will always remain accessible to the public.”
Gadkari’s impassioned advocacy for fuel independence aligns with the larger vision of transforming India’s energy narrative, underscoring the criticality of embracing sustainable, domestic alternatives to pave the way for a more self-reliant and economically robust nation.
This vision not only encapsulates the potential economic benefits but also envisions a future where India’s energy sovereignty plays a pivotal role in shaping a more secure and sustainable global landscape.