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Tesla should not get special treatment, says Ola CEO Bhavish Aggarwal

Ola Electric CEO Bhavish Aggarwal has said that he does not believe Tesla deserves to be “treated differently” to incentivise manufacturing and sales in India. Ola Electric would be a direct competitor to Tesla in India, having launched the electric S1 Pro scooter and hinted at a project to build an electric car at a recent event in Bengaluru.

Speaking to London-based newspaper The Financial Times, Aggarwal said, “Tesla is free to come in and put up a shop here and sell its cars. They just want to be treated differently from others, which I believe is not in the interests of India.”

Aggarwal was referring to Tesla’s attempts over the last few months to convince Indian authorities to loosen the tax laws around importing and selling electric vehicles in India. At the moment, the tax implications can go up to 100 percent of the vehicle’s price.

On May 27, Tesla founder Elon Musk had attempted to publicly put pressure on the government by tweeting that the company would not build a manufacturing plant in India unless it was able to sell its cars there first. Aggarwal responded by implying that India did not need Tesla.

The latest update from Tesla is that all proposed sales in India have been halted, and their staff in country has been redirected to work wider Asia-Pacific projects. The company’s first employee in country, Manuj Khurana, reportedly left the post in June in a sign of Tesla’s stalled ambitions in India.

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