Cement price in Himachal reduced

Shimla, Jan 5 (IANS) Three cement majors Thursday reduced the price of cement by Rs.25 per bag in Himachal Pradesh, said Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal.

‘Ambuja, ACC and Jaypee have agreed to reduce the price of 50 kg cement bag by Rs.25 with immediate effect. This will be a great relief to the consumers in the state,’ Dhumal told reporters after a meeting of company functionaries here to rationalise the cement prices.

The opposition Congress had alleged that the cement produced in the state is available at cheaper rates in neighbouring Punjab and Haryana than the hill state.

Talking to reporters after the meeting, Dhumal said the central government had taken cement as commodity out of the list of controlled items. ‘This enabled the companies to determine cement prices at their own level,’ he said.

During the recently concluded state assembly session, Food and Civil Supplies Minister Ramesh Dhawala said the rates of cement in the state vary from company to company.

He said according to information available with him, each bag of cement costs the company around Rs.158.

He said Ambuja was selling a bag of cement from Rs.309 to Rs.350, ACC from Rs.305.98 to Rs.354 and Jaypee from Rs.295 to Rs.326.

The state has four mega cement plants – Barmana (ACC), Darlaghat (Ambuja), Rajban (CCI) and Bagha (Jaypee). The aggregate capacity is 10.66 million tonnes.