Civil contractors cry foul over shortage of sand

Civil Contractors Association Mangaluru has urged the district administration and elected representatives to solve the row over the shortage of sand in the district.

Addressing a press meet here on Tuesday, association president Purushotham Kottary sought to know when the district administration will lift the ban on extraction and transportation of sand. The extraction, supply and transportation of sand for construction activities in the district have been banned since April. Citing silly reasons, the district administration and department of mines and geology has been postponing the ban period and has been supporting the sand mafia, he alleged.

‘Workers in trouble’

He said that construction labourers are in distress due to unemployment as the construction activities have come to a standstill for the last six months. None of the elected representatives are showing any interest in solving the row over the shortage of sand.

He urged the deputy commissioner to allow extraction of sand that is available on the banks of rivers and ensure that sand is available for the common man at a cheaper rate. If the shortage of sand continues, then the association will have to stage a protest in the near future, he warned.

Association vice president Dinkar Suvarna alleged that the sand which was available for Rs 300 to Rs 400 per load a few years ago, is now not available even if one pays Rs 7,000 to Rs 8,000. “However, it is available if one pays about Rs 10,000 per load,” he rued and appealed the authorities concerned to set right the anomalies.

He asked why the people of the coastal region must go for M-sand when good sand is available. “The people of the coastal region are forced to go for M-sand while the people from far away are getting good sand from the coastal region for a good price,” he alleged.

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