New sand policy to benefit whom?

Andhra Pradesh Minister for Mines and Geology Galla Aruna Kumari today said the State Government has fixed Rs 325 as the price per cubic metre of sand under the new policy. Announcing the new sand mining policy at a press conference in Secretariat, the Minister said the government had taken a decision to supply sand at free of cost for houses to be constructed under the Indiramma Scheme.

Stating that the state government had imposed an intra-State ban on transport of sand to prevent its scarcity, she said usage of porcelains had also been banned at river basins to checkenvironmental damage. Ms Aruna said 100 per cent of royalty collected from sand mining would be deposited in the Zilla Panchayat accounts. She said the sand reaches in villages would be allotted through gram panchayats to the societies for mining and ZP would decide on fixing the rate of sand. The Minister said the sand mined at reservoirs would be utilised only for the construction of government buildings. She warned that the lorries carrying sand would be seized if the contractors resorted to illegal transportation of sand.