The Punjab government, on Friday, ordered a crackdown on unlicensed retailers selling bricks in the state.
Announcing the move, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Minister Lal Chand Kataruchak ordered the introduction of an online registration system for renewal of brick licenses.
A spokesperson of the Punjab government said the minister, on Friday, met a delegation of brick kiln owners who apprised him of all the problems being faced by them in running their business.
The main grouse of the delegation was that a large number of unauthorised shops are operating at many places in the border districts which are actively engaged in selling bricks of poor quality at cheap rates, which they said is adversely affecting the normal business of the brick kilns who are doing their business with dedication.
Appreciating the concerns of the delegation, Kataruchak ordered the crackdown on all unlicensed shops operating in the state and directed the department to enforce these directions within the next two weeks.
The spokesperson said the minister directed the department to simplify the procedure for renewal of brick kiln licenses by allowing the owners to apply for a consolidated license of five years, which is expected to come as a major relief to the industry which at present does the rounds of offices every year for renewal.
Appreciating the concerns of the industry regarding irregular supply of coal, Kataruchak assured that he would take up the matter with the Department of Industries to ensure that there is no shortage of coal in the state. The Minister also assured that the demand of the brick industry for use of paddy stubble as a fuel would be taken up with PPCB for early resolution, he said.