India has acquired its first Compressed Natural Gas tractor. The CNG tractor was presented by the Minister of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), Nitin Gadkari. According to the report, the new CNG tractor will reportedly save up to Rs. 1.5 lakh per year in fuel costs. The Diesel Tractor Conversion Kit has been jointly developed by Rawmatt Techno Solutions and Tomasetto Achille India. Gadkari said the government will establish adjustment centers for retrofitting CNG in tractors and that the plan is to establish such centers in all districts.
The CNG tractor converted to CNG is owned by Union Minister Gadkari and has obtained a Certificate of Registration from Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Oil, Natural Gas, and Steel. The launch event was also attended by Federation ministers Narendra Singh Tomar, Parshottam Rupala, and V.K Singh. The tractor has been under test for six months and compared to the conventional diesel tractor, it is claimed that the modified CNG tractor causes 75 percent less pollution. However, the cost of the CNG conversion kit has not been made public.
In his speech, Gadkari claimed that modifying existing diesel tractors with combinations of compressed natural gas would help farmers increase their income by reducing operating costs. The Union minister claims that on average farmers spend up to Rs. 3 lakh to Rs. 3.5 lakh per year on diesel and by adopting this alternative fuel technology they can save up to Rs. 1.5 lakh in fuel cost. In addition to reducing operating costs, CNG technology will also help reduce the emissions of harmful gases released by conventional diesel tractors.
The Union minister also emphasized the fact that CNG is priced at Rs. 42.70 per kilogram compared to diesel, which is priced at Rs. 78.38 per liter in Delhi, making the be a cheaper option first. Details on the performance and other specifications of the CNG tractor were not disclosed.