The government of Maharashtra has increased royalties on the extraction of minor minerals. In accordance with the notification issued by the Department of Revenue and Forestry, the royalty changes will take effect from July 1. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, that increase has not abated well and quarry owners have urged the government to halt the increase. for the time being. On June 4, the department published the last notification effecting the increase from July 1.
As per the notification, almost all royalty rates were increased by 50 percent, compared to the rates specified in the notification of May 11, 2015. This angered quarry owners, who were faced with the impact of the drop in demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Altaf Ahmed, president of the Vidarbha Quarry Owners’ Welfare Association, the state government should not have increased royalty rates as this will put an additional burden on the market, which is severely affected by the COVID pandemic- 19 and everyone is in shock economic pressure. He called on the Chief Minister and the Minister of Revenue to put a stop to this increase in royalty rates for the time being. According to the notification dated May 11, 2015, the royalty rate was Rs 400 / – per brass limestone and lime shell used in kilns for the manufacture of lime used as a building material. Now, in accordance with the new notification, the royalty rate for this category of minor minerals has been increased to Rs 600 / – per brass as of July 1, 2021. Likewise, the rate of Rs 400 / – per brass has been increased at Rs 600. / – per brass for all stones remove regardless of size, including stone dust, by excavation or collection. The rate of ordinary sand not used for refractories and ceramics making, metallurgical activities, optical purposes, stowage in coal mines, silvicrete cement making, and pottery and glass making was increased from Rs 400 / – per brass to Rs 600 / – per brass for an area other than Mumbai metropolitan area.
More importantly, ordinary earth used for filling or leveling in the construction of embankments, roads, railways and buildings had a royalty rate of Rs 400 / – per brass. It has also been increased to Rs 600 / – per brass. According to Altaf Ahmed, “We were paying Rs 400 / – per brass royalty for basalt, building stone and Rs 40 / – per brass as mining development fund. These charges have been increased to Rs 600 / – per brass and Rs 60 / – per brass respectively. In the given circumstances of declining demand, we have asked the Chief Minister and the Minister of Revenue to halt the increase. “
The 2015 notification made a lot of noise, after which it could not be implemented for two years. It later entered into force without retroactive effect. The state government has the power to notify royalty rate changes every three years. According to the notification from 2015, the dead rent on all minor minerals except granite was Rs 6,000 / – per hectare or part of it. Now, according to the latest notification, it has been increased to Rs 9,000 / – per hectare. Thus, overall, there has been an average 50 percent increase in royalty rates for minor minerals compared to the 2015 notification.