Andhra Pradesh: Free Sand Policy to come into effect on July 8

People will now be able to purchase sand from the reaches by paying only transportation and seigniorage charges.
Under the previous government, people had to pay a heavy price on a per-tonne basis to procure sand.
Under the previous government, people had to pay a heavy price on a per-tonne basis to procure sand. Photo | Express

VIJAYAWADA : The State government is all set to re-introduce the Free Sand Policy starting Monday. People will now be able to purchase sand from the reaches by paying only transportation and seigniorage charges.

The TDP government had implemented the Free Sand Policy during its 2014-19 tenure. However, when the YSRC formed government in 2019, the policy was scrapped.

Under the previous government, people had to pay a heavy price on a per-tonne basis to procure sand. Mining and sale of sand was entrusted to private companies, which used to pay Rs 375 per tonne to the State government. This method made sand, an essential raw material for the building and construction sector, a premium commodity. With the present government re-launching the Free Sand Policy, people are set to get sand at a much more economical price. As sand mining is not possible during the rainy season, sand available at the stockyards across the State is being provided to the people under the revised policy.

The Mines Department has identified a stock of 43 lakh tonnes, while the demand for the next three months (up to September) is estimated to be 88 lakh tonnes. Cost of sand will vary between districts and sand reaches, depending on the distance from the sand reach to the stock point.

“As distance between the sand reaches and the stockyard in NTR district is less in comparison to some other districts, sand would be cheaper here,” NTR district collector G Srijana observed. 

Transportation cost & seigniorage fee

Sand can be purchased from the reaches across the State by paying transportation and seigniorage charges. For first 10 days, the transactions will be offline, thereafter, the entire process will be online

Seigniorage fee will go to Panchayat Raj bodies

In the eight stockyards in NTR district, a total of 5,54,384 tonnes of sand is available. Prices have been fixed at Rs 313 per tonne in Kanchela, Rs 228 in Magallu, Rs 252 in Kodavatikallu, Rs 234 in Allurupadu, Rs 313 in Anumanchipalle, Rs 210 in Polampalli, Rs 325 in Keesara, and Rs 240 in Moguluru.

Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB), and Vigilance and Enforcement Department have been entrusted with the task to ensure stern measures are in place to prevent reselling of sand and formation of syndicates. The Seignorage fee collected will be credited to Zilla Parishad, Mandal Parishad, and Gram Panchayats. Banners with prices of sand will be displayed prominently at the stockyards. For the first 10 days, the transactions will be offline, thereafter, the entire process will be online.

Five stock points in Guntur district have 9.34 lakh tonnes of sand available, while six stock points, each in Bapatla and Palnadu districts, have 72,736 metric tonnes and 2.39 lakh metric tonnes sand respectively.

Sand from Srikakulam and East Godavari districts will be stocked at the Bheemili and Aganampudi sand depots for distribution in Visakhapatnam. Each individual, upon presenting their Aadhaar card, will be entitled to receive up to 20 tonnes of sand per day.

Visakhapatnam Joint Collector K Mayur Ashok advised people looking to purchase sand to take advantage of the policy. He explained that they can buy sand by providing a copy of their Aadhaar card to the sand depot in-charge and paying the relevant transportation charges. The charges applicable for purchasing sand at Aganampudi Depot are Rs 1,394 per tonne, and Rs 758 per tonne at Bheemili Depot. The sale of sand will be conducted daily from 6 am to 6 pm.

Ashok warned people against illegal sand stocking and transportation. He stated that any violations would be met with appropriate action as per the rules. Complaints can be reported by contacting the control room at the collectorate on 0891-2590100.

In Kadapa district, sand is available at 11 stockyards. The cost of one tonne sand is priced at Rs 340 in P Anantapuram, Rs 468 in Badvel, Rs 341 in Kamalapuram, Rs 340 in Siddvatanam, Rs 587 in Porumamill, Rs 340 in Kotturu and VN Palle, Rs 468 in Pulivendula and Rs 400 in Mydukur.

In Anantapur district, 71,430 metric tonnes of sand is available and the price has been fixed at Rs 195 per tonne. In Sri Sathya Sai district, total sand available at the stockyards is 61,300 metric tonnes. The price has been set at Rs 277 per tonne.

In Dr Br Ambedkar Konaseema district, a total of 2,44,131 tonnes of sand is available at six stockyards.

The price has been fixed at Rs 245. In Kakinada district, a total of 1,13,293 metric tonnes of sand is available and the price has been fixed at Rs 655.

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