Passes issued before the period of ban too would be allowed to be renewed and priority would be granted to the holders concerned.

The allotment of sand passes, which was stopped several months ago following a ban on river sand mining by the National Green Tribunal, was resumed by various grama panchayats in the district on Thursday.

This followed an order issued by District Collector C.A. Latha in the wake of a latest recommendation from the State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA). Passes issued before the period of ban too would be allowed to be renewed and priority would be granted to the holders concerned.

On Monday, the ban on river sand mining was formally relaxed by the district administration. For over three months, the restriction had been in force resulting in the rise in prices of already procured stock. Though there were demands from various corners to lift the ban, the SEIAA did not give the nod.

Revenue officials said the panchayats secretaries would be responsible for issuing new passes and renewal of the old ones. From Monday to Thursday, several such passes were renewed by the grama panchayats, they added.

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