The Commerce and Industry Ministry is planning to sell the vast chunk of idle salt land to public sector enterprises or state governments at market rates so that it can be utilised for productive purposes.
The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has floated a draft Cabinet note on the matter seeking views of different ministries.
“About 60,000 acres of salt land are in different states. Some land has been encroached, some are into litigations. The idea is to distribute the land to government departments or to sell it to PSUs or states at market rates,” an official said.
Departments, including ports and renewable energy, have shown interest in taking the salt land for their use.
The official said the land could fetch a good earning to the central government.
After getting views of the different departments and ministries, DIPP will approach the Union Cabinet for its approval to go ahead with its proposal.
Further, DIPP has suggested reducing the number of employees in the office of the Salt Commissioner.
“Some 500-600 employees are there and most of them have no work. So, we have asked the Department of Personnel and Training to include them into its surplus pool of employees,” the official added.
The Salt Commissioner’s office, headquartered in Jaipur, is under administrative control of DIPP. The functions include promotion of technological development, custody and superintendence of departmental salt lands and other assets.