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sand

Reported by rjr, Edited by rjr | Updated: Jan 01, 2017 21:44:17

 By R.Jagadeeswara Rao

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The free sand policy of the state government, aimed at solving the acute shortage of sand that hampered construction activity,is being scuttled by unscrupulous middlemen in connivance with the officials concerned with monitoring the policy. The problem is felt more acutely in Visakhapatnam district which,incidentally has no river beds aand hence depend on neighbouring districts like Srikakulam and East Godavari for transportation of sand.It is exactly this aspect that the middlemen-officials nexus has been taking advantage,resulting in the cost of sand shooting up. According to the CREDAI-VSP chapter,Chairman Sri K.Ramakrishna Rao,Visakhapatnam,where construction activity has been going on in a big way,  the district requires 250-to 300 truck loads of sand every day. Since there are no designated river beds in the district,the district depends on the neighbouring districts of Srikakulam and East Godavari. There is no problem with the operators of the trucks. But while sand is being transported,offocials stop the vehicle and harass with all sorts of questions like the source of sand,whether it is brought from the designated river bed and other questions. It was an alibi,meant to scuttle free transport and make the builders depend on middlemen. The result was that the price of sand had shot in  the last few months and there seems to be no possibility of it comoing down,unless higher authorities interven and take corrective steps,Sri Ramakrishna Rao said.

Way bak in 2015,the shortage of sand was so acute and the cost of sand reached to such an extent that people used to say " the cost of kg of sand is more than kg of rice" A truck load of sand was costing about Rs.45,000/' But thanks to the government's intervnetion leading to supply of sand free of cost,it had come down to just Rs 11,000/- a truck load ,the cost being transport charges. But the problem is back to squareone and the cost had now gone up to around Rs.25,000/- a truck load.

As mentioned already,construction activity has been going on in the city and around the city in a big way and a large number of people,both skilled and unskilled, are employed in this sector. Prices of other inputs of construction,like cement,taxes and others charges had already gone up.The realty industry is already under going a difficult phase what with demonetisation and the highly cusotmer-friendly provisions under the RERA. .CREDAI members assert that they would be constrained to resort to agitational methods if the authorities concerend failed to intervene and take corrective measures.

 
Tags:  back to square one
 

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