Mysore, Mar 20: The Builders Association of India (BAI), Karnataka chapter Chairman Sriram today urged the Union Government to set up Steel Regulatory Authority of India on the lines of TRAI to regulate the prices of steel. Speaking to newspersons here, he said the prices of steel which was Rs 30,000 per tonne had gone up sharply in the last two months and stood at Rs 50,000 per metric tonne.
He said despite Finance Minister P Chidambaram reducing the duties on steel in the budget, the prices had increased by Rs 5,000 per metric tonne. It was acceptable by the construction industry, however, the steel industry had raised Rs 20,000 per metric tonne. Stating that the government through the Steel Authority of India (SAI) controls over 35 per cent of the steel market, he said they were also part of the Indian Steel Alliance (ISA) formed by major steel manufacturers.
Alleging that the Union Government was not taking neccessary steps to check ISA which was arbitrarily raising the prices of steel, he said several vital infrastructure projects had come to standstill. Industries were shutting down and the construction sector was badly hit by this abnormal rise. This would lead to unemployment, he added.
If proper measures were not taken immediately, the entire construction sector and the industrial sector would be forced to stop work till the issue was resolved, BAI chairman said.