Cement shortage, high prices slow construction in Mysore, India

Cement shortage, high prices slow construction in Mysore, India
Published: 02 July 2007

Construction in Mysore has been facing a crisis for the last few weeks due to cement shortage and escalating prices.

Cement prices have shot up from Rs 240 to Rs 375 a bag over a short period, complain construction workers. They say around 5,000 workers have lost their livelihood as construction has come to a standstill.

While the State Building Workers’ Association, Mysore unit, alleges the "creation of an artificial scarcity and black marketing" by dealers, the Builders’ Association of India, Mysore, blames the industry for the cement scarcity.

"It is not just the price that is affecting the construction industry in Mysore, it is also the non-availability," Workers’ Association state president MG Mani had said on Wednesday in Mysore.

The worst hit are small builders and contractors, as major builders manage to find supplies. Transportation costs also add to the woes of the small contractors.

Citing an example, Builders’ Association of India’s All India Management Committee member MS Nandakumar said when a consignment arrived in Mysore last week, each contractor could get hardly 15 bags.

Construction had seen an increased tempo with infotech major Infosys and L&T giving a boost to it through their expansion.