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Green activists in Mumbai doubtful of success of plastic ban

Activists pointed out that the Centre’s 2016 nationwide ban on polythene bags less than 50 microns had failed in its implementation.

mumbai Updated: Jun 27, 2018 12:30 IST
Sanjana Bhalerao
Sanjana Bhalerao
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Maharashtra,plastic ban
The plastic ban came into effect in Maharashtra on June 23.(HT File Photo)

Four days into Maharashtra’s complete ban on plastic bags with a minimum fine of Rs5,000, the city’s environmentalists and activists have expressed doubts whether it will be successful.

Initially, with intense lobbying, milk packets, PET bottles and plastic packages at the manufacturing stage were exempted from the ban. With such demands and lobbying increasing day by day, activists are expressing pessimism.

“Why penalise citizens for plastic use? Why not ban all kinds of plastic, even the ones at the manufacturing stage. The simple rule that the local civic body could have followed was enforcing [waste] segregation,” said Raj Kumar Sharma, an activist and a petitioner against the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

Activists pointed out that the Centre’s 2016 nationwide ban on polythene bags less than 50 microns in thickness failed in its implementation. However, environmentalists like Dayanand Stalin, from the non-profit Vanashakti, said it is high time that such a ban was implemented. “I welcome the state government’s step. It now needs to get plastic recycling in place ,” he said.

The BMC has collected about 1.45 lakh kg of plastic in the past three months and plans to auction it on July 15.

First Published: Jun 27, 2018 12:29 IST