Inspection report submitted, cement prices not reduced in Himachal

Inspection report submitted, cement prices not reduced in Himachal

2022-04-13 01:34:02


Tribune News Service

Solan, April 12

The state government is yet to initiate action against cement units despite a nine-member inter-departmental committee having submitted its report on irregularities about more than a fortnight ago.

With the manufacturers failing to slash cement prices despite the state government’s directions, this committee was constituted to examine if the manufacturers adhered to various norms.

All eight manufacturing units were examined about two months ago and sources said certain irregularities had been detected in some plants. These manufacturers were Ambuja Cements Limited, ACC and Ultratech, at Darlaghat, Nalagarh and Bagha.

Issues like lack of employment for locals and shortcomings in adherence to air and water pollution norms have been coming to the fore every now and then. Sources said elaborate reports had been prepared by officials about each unit.

The committee comprised Directors of Industries, Department of Environment, Science and Technology, Labour Commissioner, Excise Commissioner, member secretary of the State Pollution Control Board, Deputy Commissioner, SP, Conservator of Forests and geologists who had inspected the mining lease areas.

Though the Industries Minister had announced months ago that rates would be brought down, nothing of the sort has happened so far. Instead of complying with the direction, the companies raised the cement price by Rs 10 per bag in the last few months.

The state government was facing flak for high cement prices in Himachal vis-à-vis the neighbouring states. Being the election year, it was sure to emerge as a poll issue if the government fails to take any action.

This is the first such committee to have been constituted to look into the price issue.

Director, Industries, Rakesh Prajapati, who coordinated the committee, said its report has already been submitted to the state government.

Despite being a cement manufacturing state, its price was higher than the neighbouring states. A bag of cement, which was priced at Rs 385 in January 2019, is now available for Rs 423. In Haryana, a cement bag costs Rs 395, say market sources.

Additional Chief Secretary, Industries, RD Dhiman said the report was being examined and action would be taken against the violators under relevant laws.

No action against ‘irregularities’

  • As the manufacturers were not scaling down cement prices despite the state government’s directions, a committee was constituted to examine if the manufacturers were adhering to norms.
  • All eight manufacturing units were examined about two months ago and sources said certain irregularities had also been detected in some plants.
  • Issues like the lack of employment for locals and shortcomings in adherence to air and water pollution norms had come to the fore but no action has been initiated.


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Source by [himachalpradeshtourism.org]

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