Indian Government takes strict action after Chevrolet Tavera fiasco

Wednesday 31 July 2013, 11:51 AM by

The fiascos related to recalling of vehicles in excess of 3 lakh units has severely damaged the reputation of Indian auto industry. Many industry experts and officials have expressed their view about the same, calling for the government to take actions regarding the same. In response to these requests, the Indian government is planning the introduction of a necessary vehicle recall policy for automobile manufacturers. This was confirmed by a senior official working in the heavy industries ministry.

Indian Government takes strict action after Chevrolet Tavera fiasco | CarTrade.com
Indian Government takes strict action after Chevrolet Tavera fiasco

General Motors India's recall of the Chevrolet Tavera following the admission of violation of testing norms is the immediate cause for this action by the government. This recall, in terms of volume, has been one of the largest the Indian auto industry has ever seen. According to sources close to the matter, American and Indian employees were involved in misguiding government officers regarding the emission test results. Currently, General Motors has stopped the production of the Chevrolet Tavera, which is one of its top selling models in the Indian car market. However, the company also claims that a solution has been found for rectifying emission problems and it hopes to resume manufacturing once the authorities give approval.

It would be apt to say that this controversy has caused widespread disarray and resulted in some severe measures by the company. Notably, it forced Sam Winegarden to retire from the post of Vice President for Global Engine Engineering. In addition, a total of 10 top notch officials were fired, which included employees from India and United States of America.

Unfortunately, General Motors India was not the only firm involved in the recalling of vehicles. Top manufacturers like Honda, Ford, Renault, Toyota and Yamaha were among the others that contributed to a total in excess of 3 lakh units being recalled. Vehicles that were recalled failed to adhere to the production regulations laid down by Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM). However, the recall by General Motors was primarily due failure in meeting of emission norms. An official, working in SIAM, mentioned that the recalling by General Motors would not strictly fall under the association's voluntary code.

Joint secretary in the ministry of heavy industries, Ambuj Sharma, said that the government is working on a policy that instructs firms to make a mandatory recall in case there is a manufacturing fault. "Previously, we were examining whether we can have a mandatory government-administered recall policy. That is gaining weight now [after the GM recall] and we are again considering it and we hope to take a decision early as to whether we can have just like Europe, Japan and the U.S. a government administered recall policy," he explained.

Sharma added that International Centre for Automotive Technology and Automotive Research Association of India, both government-affiliated agencies involved in the testing of Tavera SUV, are also under the scanner and are being questioned. The investigation team from India will be under Nitin Gokarn, Chief Executive of the National Automotive Testing and Research & Development Infrastructure Project.

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