AMARAVATI: Minister for Panchayat Raj Peddireddy Ramachandra Reddy said it was unfortunate that opposition leader N Chandrababu Naidu’s son Lokesh and his foster son Pawan Kalyan were making baseless allegations against the YSR Congress Party government by making rude comments on the new sand policy introduced by the government while it was trying to undo the damage done by the previous TDP government.

Speaking at the Secretariat on Tuesday, he said it is a known fact that sand can’t be mined during the rainy season and floods during the past few months to Godavari and Krishna rivers have led to the scarcity of sand in the state. Godavari is still flowing to the brim, said the minister.

Under the circumstances the state government was planning to conduct Sand Week from November 14 to 21 to improve the sand availability in the state as disclosed by Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy today in Spandana programme. The collectors have been asked to locate new stock points for the sale of sand. The number of stock points has already been increased from 137 to 180. While the availability of sand is 80,000 tonnes it has been increased to 1.2 lakh tonnes per day, the minister said.

The APMDC will identify new sand reaches for improving the situation and officials would work on two shifts for the purpose, he said. A festive atmosphere would be created at the stock points to provide sand to the customers. Efforts would be made to increase the availability of sand to 2 lakh tonnes.

It is but ridiculous that Chandrababu Naidu has decided to politicize the issue by staging a dharna on November 14. The minister said Naidu wants to make a living by making false allegations against the new sand policy knowing very well that rains since August have hampered sand mining. A director general of police has been appointed to check hoarding of sand. Video cameras have been arranged at focal points and 200 check posts have been arranged for the purpose, he said.