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Karnataka govt mulls policy change to boost M-Sand

To satisfy the demand in Karnataka, 35 lakh metric tonnes of sand was being supplied from M-sand manufacturing units
Last Updated : 16 August 2022, 17:37 IST

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To meet the growing demand for sand, more licenses will be granted to stone crushing units for the production of M-Sand, Mines and Geology Minister Halappa Achar said.

The government is mulling changes in the sand policy to increase the production of M-Sand in the state, the minister said.

While the annual demand of the state is 45 lakh metric tonnes, it is facing a shortage of five lakh metric tonnes. Meeting the demand for sand will help put a permanent end to the sand mafia, according to the minister.

To satisfy the demand in Karnataka, 35 lakh metric tonnes of sand were being supplied from M-sand manufacturing units. “We are extracting around five lakh metric tonnes from natural sources. We are still short of five lakh metric tonnes of sand,” he said.

Dependence on M-sand is essential to ensure a steady supply of sand, Achar said.

On the five lakh metric tonnes of sand extracted from natural sources, he said that Hatti Mining Company is entrusted with the distribution of this sand in 15 districts, whereas Karnataka State Minerals Corporation Ltd will distribute it in the remaining 16 districts, he said.

Local bodies such as gram panchayats are empowered to extract sand found in their limits so that the demand is met. Despite this, if there are any instances of illegal extraction, the respective district administration will be held responsible, the minister warned.

Sand price

He said that the government has fixed Rs 800 for every tonne of sand. M-Sand is being sold at the rate of Rs 700 to Rs 1,200 per tonne.

On Supreme Court clearing export of Iron Ore from Karnataka, he said that 12 of the 28 mineral blocks in the state were auctioned. Preparations are on to auction the remaining blocks, which will contribute significantly in increasing revenue for the department.

In the last fiscal revenue generated by the department was Rs 6,308 crore, which is a 145% increase compared to Rs 4,357 crore in 2019-20, Achar said.

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Published 16 August 2022, 17:05 IST

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