AP cabinet apaproves new sand policy

South India

The policy has mulled a single entity to supply sand throughout Andhra Pradesh

The Andhra Pradesh government has decided to hand over sand supply to a single entity. The new policy intended to ensure transparency in handling of sand was taken at a meeting of the state cabinet held at Amaravati on Thursday, November 5.

Although it was initially decided to hand over the sand supply to the Central Public Sector Undertakings, they did not come forward to take over the responsibility.

The new decision was taken on the recommendation of a cabinet sub-committee headed by Minister for Mines Peddireddy Ramachandra Reddy, according to Hans India.

The committee recommended that it be handed over to a reputed private company and suggested that the process be carried out through open tender. The State government earlier in the last month reviewed the sand policy and decided to make changes to maintain more transparency.

After facing criticism, the government constituted cabinet sub committee to study the sand policies in the neighbouring states. Earlier, the government decided to set up the Andhra Pradesh Sand Corporation to implement the sand policy effectively.

There were reports from the people that the supply of sand was not adequate compared to the demand despite sand smuggling has been controlled. It is in this backdrop, the government made some changes in the existing sand policy and approved it in cabinet, the Hans India report said.

Transportation was found to be a major hurdle which hit sand supply. The government had, at one stage, proposed supply of vehicles to unemployed youth through finance corporations and engage them in sand transport. However, the proposal has not seen the light of day even after a year.

Once the excavation is streamlined with the involvement of corporate companies, the government plans to focus on supply of sand to different categories, including government schemes, domestic use and for commercial purpose.

Image Credit: New Indian Express

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