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Thursday, February 2, 2023
HomeNewsTop NewsSand Ghats auction delay, hits construction sector in Jharkhand

Sand Ghats auction delay, hits construction sector in Jharkhand

The Hemant Soren government told the members of the Jharkhand Vidhan Sabha in March that only 22 out of the 608 sand banks were functional while the auctioning for the rest would be completed within a fortnight.

The auctioning of over 580 sand ghats across Jharkhand is unlikely to take place before August, resulting in a long-term crisis of sand for the construction of commercial projects, private homes and Centre-funded schemes like the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana.

Aboobacker Siddique, the secretary of mines and geology department, on Tuesday told that preparations for the auctioning of sand ghats were in an advanced state in April when the model code of conduct came into effect after the state election commission notified the dates for the four-phase Panchayat elections in May.

“The Jharkhand State Mineral Development Corporation has invited tender applications and they are in different stages of evaluation. Now, the JSMDC has been asked to expedite and finalise the due process now that the model code of conduct is over,” he added.

The Hemant Soren government told the members of the Jharkhand Vidhan Sabha in March that only 22 out of the 608 sand banks were functional while the auctioning for the rest would be completed within a fortnight. As many as 586 sand banks are pending auctions since 2020.

On Monday, the Federation of Jharkhand Chamber of Commerce and Industries (FJCCI) members expressed concern that the delay in auction would result in complete collapse of construction work in the state. Siddique told them that the National Green Tribunal (NGT) guidelines prohibit sand mining between June 15 and October 15 each year.

“The next three months will be utilised to complete the procedures and conduct the auctioning for mining to happen unhindered in October,” Siddique said.

Ankur Anil, the owner of city-based Darling Housing Private Limited, said the unavailability of sand will delay the completion of projects and cause an increase in the prices for new bookings. “The construction sector is already hit by a rise in the prices of raw materials. The shortage of sand is adding to the woes. The sand-laden trucks, which are being procured from neighbouring states by paying royalties, are also being frisked by the state police,” Anil said.

BJP’s Bhawanathpur MLA Bhanu Pratap Shahi said, “The poor people are not getting sand to build their homes while the illegally mined sand is being shipped outside the state by mafias.”

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