Bhubaneswar: Odisha has recorded a 124% increase in revenue from sand mining in the year 2019-20 in comparison to last fiscal (2018-19).
“The total revenue earned from sand in the year 2019-20 increased to Rs 680 crore against the total revenue of around Rs 303 crore in the Financial Year 2018-19, thereby recording a growth of 124%,” informed Director Minor Minerals Bibhuti Bhusan Das at a State-level review chaired by Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy.
Expeditious implementation of construction projects which has resulted in demand for sand led to the identification of new sand sairat sources in different parts of the State taking the total sources to 1859.
“The annual availability of sand for mining in the State has increased to 1,12,35,392 cubic meter. Out of this, the sairats with annual yielding capacity of 65,70,509 cubic meter have been operationalized so far,” informed
Principal Secretary Revenue & Disaster Management Bishnupada Sethi at the meeting.
Reviewing the progress made so far, the Chief Secretary directed the Revenue and Disaster Management department to operationalize all sairat sources within a definite time schedule for filling the gap between ‘demand and supply’ of sand.
“Enhancement of legally operational sources will have the triple benefit of ensuring the supply of sand for the construction sector, containing the theft of sand and increasing the collection of revenue,” Tripathy said.
Following instructions of the Chief Secretary, an extensive survey was undertaken by Revenue officers at the field for identification of new sand sources in the current year.
Around 450 new sources have been identified through this effort taking the total number of sand sairat sources to 1859. Out of this 640 sources have been auctioned for the current year.
The Chief Secretary directed departmental officials to expedite the process for auction of the balance sources.
The department was asked to monitor auctioning of the sand sources regularly and keep up-grading the number of sources.
Tripathy also directed to finalize development of i4-MS software for real-time monitoring of the sand excavation and transportation, and, fix the timeline for its application.
Further, Chief Secretary directed to make a district-wise assessment of the shortage or surplus of sand keeping in view the requirements in Government and private sectors.
He also asked departmental officials to identify new sources on sand-rich riverbeds in collaboration with the Department of Water Resources, Forest & Environment; and, prepare scientific mining plans.
It was decided to allow inter-state transportation of surplus sand through the competitive bidding process.
Tripathy instructed officials to strengthen enforcement activities for checking illegal lifting and theft of sand.
The meeting held on digital mode from the Lok Seva Bhawan was attended by Development Commissioner Suresh Chandra Mohapatra, Additional Chief Secretary Steel & Mines Surendra Kumar, Principal Secretary Water Resources Anu Garg, Principal Secretary Finance Ashok Kumar Meena, Principal Secretary Revenue and Disaster Management Bishnupada Sethi, Principal Secretary Housing & Urban Development G. Mathivathanan, Secretary Works Krishan Kumar, Director Minor Minerals B.B. Das along with senior officers from concerned departments participated in the deliberations.