On the first day of crackdown against use of plastic bags in the city, the Chandigarh administration took a soft approach by issuing Rs 500 challans to 77 vendors who were found in possession of polybags. The National Green Tribunal had ordered to impose a fine of Rs 5,000 on those using or distributing plastic bags, plates and cups.
The drive was carried out only in the south and east divisions of the city, while there was no information from the central division about the drive.
In the east division, five teams were constituted by SDM Tapasya Raghav. The inspection started from Sector-26 grain market at 11am and continued till 3pm, during which areas in Manimajara and Sector 20 were covered. The polythene bags were seized from various shops and wholesalers and 28 challans were issued. Maximum number of challans, 24, were issued in the grain market.
In the south division, four teams led by SDM Kirti Garg inspected Sector 41, Burail village, Sector 43 apni mandi, and Butrela village. As many as 49 challans were issued and a total of 40kg of polythene was seized.
The seized polythene was later sent to the dumping ground at Dadumajra for disposing it of.
Both the SDMs appealed to the traders as well as public to shun the use of bags, plates, cups made of plastic and opt for jute bags and environment-friendly products.
Meanwhile, traders have also decided to move the Punjab and Haryana high court against the NGT order.
Harish Garg, national secretary and the president Chandigarh chapter of the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) demanded postponing the implementation of the ban. “By imposing complete and unilateral ban without taking the stakeholders in loop is not fair. Traders should be given time to dispose of polythene material in stock,” Garg said.