The illegal sand mining has become major crisis in the North.
A shortage in sand is prevailing in the North as several construction projects are in progress. Because of this people who purchased sand at a lower price have to pay many fold of the earlier price.
One Tipper of sand which was purchased at Rs.17,000/= during pre-2009 periods have to be purchased at 40,000/= now, say the affected people.
Sand is being continuously mined in Thoththavadi, Iluppaikadavai, Koorai, Madu, Palampiddy Aruviyaru and Kallaru in Mannar.
The Additional Government Agent of Mannar said that the the Department of Geology at Anuradhapura has issued permits to mine sand here.
However people have met several problems by the mining for commercial purposes in breach of conditions laid in the permits.
Meanwhile, although, no permits have been issued for sand mining in the Jaffna-Thenmaradchchi – Kachchai beach, large scale sand mining is done during night time.
People have expressed concern over sand mining to a depth lower the mean sea level, the villages close by are facing a risk of sea erosion. It has been pointed out that the government should intervene and find an alternate ways and means.