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Free Sand Scheme in Andhra Pradesh

Free Sand Scheme in Andhra Pradesh

The government of Andhra Pradesh has announced a groundbreaking initiative under Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu’s leadership. This Free Sand Scheme in Andhra Pradesh promises free sand distribution across the state, aiming to create substantial employment opportunities. Minister Kollu Ravindra disclosed these significant updates, emphasizing the numerous benefits this policy brings to the people of Andhra Pradesh.

New Free Sand Scheme in Andhra Pradesh

Minister Kollu Ravindra stated that the free sand policy is set to revolutionize the construction sector in Andhra Pradesh. The previous YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) government faced criticism for restricting sand availability, leading to widespread inconvenience. In stark contrast, the new policy ensures ample sand supply, fostering growth and development in the state.

Ensuring Ample Sand Supply

Under the new policy, individuals can access the required quantity of sand for construction purposes directly from designated reaches at no cost. This move is expected to eliminate the sand shortage that plagued the state during the previous administration. Minister Ravindra assured that stringent measures would be taken to prevent illegal transportation and sale of sand.

Employment Opportunities on the Rise

The implementation of the free sand policy is not just about construction; it’s also a significant step towards job creation. The state anticipates generating numerous employment opportunities as a result of this policy. The construction industry, which relies heavily on sand, is expected to thrive, leading to job creation for many residents.

Stringent Measures Against Illegal Activities

To enforce the new policy effectively, the government has introduced stringent measures against illegal sand mining and transportation. The updated Andhra Pradesh Minor Mineral Concession Rules, 1966, now include severe penalties for unauthorized excavation and transportation of sand. Offenders face hefty fines, vehicle confiscation, and even imprisonment.

Key Provisions of Free Sand Scheme in Andhra Pradesh

  1. Free Sand Distribution: Sand for construction purposes will be available for free from designated reaches.
  2. Penalty for Illegal Activities: Severe penalties for illegal sand mining, including fines and imprisonment.
  3. Vehicle Confiscation: Vehicles involved in unauthorized sand transportation will be confiscated.
  4. Job Creation: Significant job opportunities expected due to increased construction activities.
  5. Government Monitoring: A dedicated website and call center for public complaints and monitoring.

Free Sand Policy 2024 Implementation

The government has tasked officers of the rank of Sub-Inspector of Police or Deputy Tahsildar, and the Royalty Inspector of Mines & Geology Department with enforcing the new rules. These officers have the authority to penalize offenders, confiscate vehicles, and ensure compliance with the new sand policy.

Formation of District Level Committee

Composition and Responsibilities

To address these challenges, the government decided to form a District Level Committee in each district. The committee’s members include:

  • District Collector – Chairman
  • Superintendent of Police (SP) – Member
  • District Transport Commissioner (DTC) – Member
  • River Conservator/Executive Engineer of Water Resource Department – Member
  • Assistant Director of Mines and Geology – Member-Convener

Determining Sand Prices

The committee is responsible for fixing reasonable sand prices based on several parameters:

  • Excavation, loading, and unloading charges
  • Ramp maintenance charges
  • Transportation charges based on distance

The committee meets monthly to review the implementation of prices and submits meeting minutes to the Secretary (Mines).

Measures for Effective Policy Implementation

Mandal Level Price Monitoring Task Force

District Collectors are instructed to form a Price Monitoring Task Force at the mandal level. This task force includes officials from the Revenue, Police, and Panchayat Raj Departments. They are tasked with ensuring compliance with notified prices and penalizing violators as per the APMMC Rules 1966.

Ensuring Sand Availability

To maintain a steady supply of sand, District Collectors must:

  • Identify new sand reaches and obtain necessary clearances.
  • Sanction permissions for sand de-casting from private lands.
  • Identify areas for de-siltation.

Border Check-posts

To prevent illegal transportation of sand to other states, the government has mandated the establishment and strengthening of border check-posts. These check-posts will be managed by officials from the Police, Revenue, and Transport Departments.

Flexibility for District Level Committees

The District Level Committees have the autonomy to devise guidelines suited to their respective districts to ensure the effective implementation of the Free Sand Policy.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the objective of the Free Sand Policy 2016?

The Free Sand Policy aims to provide sand to the public at no cost, curb illegal sand mining, and ensure transparency in sand distribution.

Who is responsible for setting sand prices?

The District Level Committee, chaired by the District Collector, is responsible for setting sand prices based on excavation, maintenance, and transportation costs.

What measures are in place to prevent illegal sand transportation?

The government has established border check-posts manned by officials from the Police, Revenue, and Transport Departments to curb illegal sand transportation to other states.

Public Involvement and Transparency

The Director of Mines & Geology, Andhra Pradesh, will maintain a website and call center to receive complaints from the public. This initiative aims to ensure transparency and public participation in monitoring and enforcing the new policy.

Conclusion

Andhra Pradesh’s free sand policy marks a significant step towards sustainable development and economic growth. By ensuring ample sand supply and creating job opportunities, the government aims to foster a thriving construction industry. The stringent measures against illegal activities further reinforce the commitment to transparent and effective governance. This policy not only addresses the immediate needs of the construction sector but also sets the stage for long-term development and prosperity in Andhra Pradesh.

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