The Dakshina Kannada district administration opened a control room to help people who faced difficulties in procuring sand for construction of houses and other buildings in the district, a month ago. The control room was opened at the deputy commissioner’s office building to arrange sand for construction work, in case people complain about a shortage of sand.
The initiative was launched by the district administration after the district witnessed several protests by political parties and like-minded people, alleging a shortage of sand. However, even after a month, the control room has not received calls from people with regard to a shortage of sand.
Deputy commissioner S Sasikanth Senthil told TOI that the district is not facing any sand crisis, and that it is available for construction work. “There is no shortage of sand in the district. If there is a crisis, then people should have called our control room. The price of sand has also come down, and it is available for Rs 4,000 –Rs 5,000 per truck. People get sand at all places, and there is no question of a sand crisis. That is the reason people also don’t dial the control room number,” Senthil said.
He said the district administration has given enough publicity soon after opening the control room, but it received zero response. “The control should have received at least 10 calls in a month if there is a shortage of sand,” he added.
Issuing permits to extract sand in excessive numbers will result in illegal transportation of material to other states, he said, adding that the district administration has given 72 permits.
“We have issued 72 permits to extract sand from 10 blocks in the district. We have received approval for sand extraction from 10 more blocks in the district, and we may issue 20 more permits. The total number of permits should be below 100 and this will serve our purpose. Issuing more permits will lead to illegal transportation of sand to other states,” he added.