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Mumbai plastic ban becomes a fight of egos between Raj Thackeray and nephew Aaditya

Raj Thackeray compared plastic ban to demonetisation which was declared by one person without any planning, and people had to suffer.

mumbai Updated: Jun 28, 2018 09:41 IST
Naresh Kamath
Naresh Kamath
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Mumbai plastic ban,plastic ban in Maharashtra,Aaditya Thackeray
People scan through plastic-free products kept for sale during an exhibition on plastic ban awareness, in Mumbai on Friday, June 22, 2018. (PTI)

The plastic ban has led to a new tussle between Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena and Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS). However, this time the fight is between uncle Raj and nephew Aaditya, Yuva Sena chief who came up with the idea.

On Tuesday, Raj ridiculed the ban as a ploy to collect election funds, imposed on the whim of one person [read Aadtiya]. He urged people not to pay the fine. In response, the Sena mouthpiece Saamana on Wednesday published an article signed by Aaditya, explaining why the plastic ban was inevitable.

Aaditya, in his piece, defended the ban as plastic was found to be choking the drains, the main reason why the city floods. He said plastic, which was introduced as an alternative to paper, had acquired gigantic explosive form which was detrimental to the environment. Meanwhile, in the same article, Aaditya also said that the next target is micro-bead plastic. “Our next target to control is micro-bead plastic. This, for those who are aware, is a major global problem. It comes in scrubs and other such products. I have requested the (environment) minister to ban it by the end of this year,” he said, adding he realises that micro-bead plastic is a “massive monster” that needs to be defeated globally.

In his press meet, without naming his nephew Aaditya, Raj said, “This is just like demonetisation, which was declared by one person without any planning, and people had to suffer.”

Significantly, Sena leader and state environment minister Ramdas Kadam, whose department is enforcing the statewide ban, was the first to say that Raj was against the ban, as he was worried his nephew would get credit for it. “My issue is with the government and not with my relations” said Raj.

“The real issues facing the plastic ban should have been debated, but it has become a fight of egos between the Thackerays,” said political expert Surendra Jondhale.

First Published: Jun 28, 2018 09:33 IST