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Harish V Nair, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, February 08, 2013
Plastic manufacturers and shopkeepers selling their products in plastic bags can breath easy at least for now as the temporary stay on the crackdown and prosecution against them automatically got extended by a month.



Since one-and-half months, Delhi Pollution Control Committee has not been taking action against them after the Delhi high court, which is hearing a petition filed by plastic manufacturers association challenging the ban verbally said “no prosecution in furtherance of the government notification”. But there was no written order.

A bench headed by chief justice D Murugesan was to make its stand clear on Friday but the case was not taken up. The next date of hearing has been fixed for March 8 and therefore the automatic extension of the stay.

Government and DPCC sources said they were to take a stand on future course of action against the traders and users of plastic bag after ascertaining the outcome of the court hearing on Friday.

Asked if the crackdown would now continue in the absence of a written order, a government source told HT: “there is already a verbal stay by the court and there is also a gentleman’s agreement between the government and the manufacturers that there will be no action till the court makes it stand clear”

The notification, under which no person can manufacture, import, store, sell or transport any kind of plastic bag in the city had come into force from November 23, 2012. Plastic bags included those used to cover magazines, books, invitation cards and also garbage bags.

The next date of hearing has been fixed for March 8 and therefore the automatic extension of stay order.