Monday, April 15, 2024

Officials must be alert to protect govt lands

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Deputy Chief Minister Bhatti Vikramarka Mallu directed officials here on Friday to ensure that income due to state does not go into the hands of private individuals.
The Deputy CM who also handles the Finance portfolio chaired the Cabinet Sub Committee meeting on the mobilisation of revenue and said that steps should be taken to mobilise additional revenue without burdening commoners.
The meeting was attended by MLAs and Ministers Uttam Kumar Reddy, Sridhar Babu, Jupally Krishna Rao, Chief Secretary Shanti Kumari, Special CS Ramakrishna Rao, HMDA Commissioner Dana Kishore, CCLA Commissioner Navin Mittal, Special Secretary to the Deputy CM, Krishna Bhaskar and other officials.
Bhatti said that a review meeting for increasing state revenues would be held every week and progress on various issues discussed in the previous meeting would be examined.
He said officials should be on constant alert to protect government lands in Hyderabad and surroundings and stop all illegal land registrations. Officers should protect government lands, he asserted.
He said that steps must be taken to not only increase revenue through effective utilisation of natural resources like sand but it should also be available to commoners when required.

Although the government is continuing the sand policy of the BRS government, there are reports that sand prices have increased sharply and have become unaffordable to the public. Officials should examine the reasons for this and take corrective steps, Bhatti said.
The Deputy CM said that an open auction of sand should be conducted and sand should be kept in agriculture market yards for easy availability to the public. People should not have to go to private individuals to purchase sand, he said.

Avenues for increasing revenue in house construction and other sectors should be explored, he added.

Referring to leased government properties, Bhatti said the government’s lease rates should be reviewed and an exercise must be taken up to revise lease rates, particularly in HMDA, industrial estates and the tourism sector for mobilising revenue.

The HMDA should focus on ORR surroundings and there is scope for increasing income for the government by coordinating with other departments, he said.

Bhatti sought details about applications received under the Layout Regularisation Scheme and the progress in their processing. He also reviewed reasons for the real estate boom in the past and the current situation.

As excise revenue has become a key resource he asked officials about the regulation of distilleries and how they reconcile the stock in production centres and the stock released in the market. He emphasised steps to prevent non-duty liquor from entering the State and also reviewed the difference in the prices of liquor in Telangana and other states.

Bhatti directed officials to give reports every week on the systems put in place to prevent adulteration of liquor such as special security holograms and measures taken to increase check-posts on borders.

Uttam Kumar Reddy asked officials to examine whether manufacturing liquor in the state and paying taxes or the illegal supply of liquor from other states would impact state revenues.

He said it has come to his notice that common people were being harassed while transporting sand by the police and the mining department. Officials should be careful on this issue, he said.

Industries Minister Sridhar Babu said that apart from limestone ore in the state, manganese is available in Adilabad district. He said that information on the availability of minerals in various districts should be gathered so that it could be used for additional resource mobilisation.

There are allegations that during the transport of sand from the Godavari on a single bill three heavy loads of sand were being allowed. While the government is getting one per cent revenue it was impacting three fold the roads and public health. This system should be regulated by mining officials, he said.

He instructed officials to install CCTV cameras in every sand reach to prevent illegal sand transport and to monitor vehicles transporting sand through the vehicle tracking system to increase revenue for the state and to make sand available to commoners easily.

He suggested that the proposal to tax electric vehicles should be dropped for now. Companies manufacturing electric vehicles are coming to the state and the imposition of taxes at this stage would adversely impact state finances and employment generation, he said.

He also reviewed with officials the registration of colonies under GO No: 188 and the income accruing to the government through the registration of SCCL worker colonies.

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