Pune volunteers create awareness about cloth bags

Residents and other environment lovers have come forward to market them and create awareness about their use across the city.
Post the ban, people have begun carrying cloth bags to markets.(Rahul Raut/HT Photo)
Post the ban, people have begun carrying cloth bags to markets.(Rahul Raut/HT Photo)
Updated on Jun 25, 2018 05:38 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Pune | ByPrachi Bari

With Maharashtra state calling for a complete ban on plastic across the cities, city NGO eCoexist has developed a thin cloth bag for groceries and shopping purposes. Interestingly, residents and other environment lovers have come forward to market them and create awareness about their use across the city.

“To meet the demand for a simple and affordable cloth bag, we have developed a thin cotton bag which can be retailed at Rs 20 only. This bag offers an income of Rs 7 per bag to the women who make it. Marketing of the bag is done for free and other overheads are borne by eCoexist. To enable the widespread distribution of these bags, we invited individuals and NGOs to participate in the network and sent stocks of the cloth bags to people across Pune,” said Manisha Gutman, co-founder eCoexist.

Bibvewadi resident Sameer Barde is one of the volunteers helping to create cloth bag awareness, and helping him in his mission is his 8-year-old daughter who is going door-to-door in their society, meeting people and explaining to them why one should convert from plastic to cloth bag.

“The demand for cloth bag will begin slowly, but that is not the only reason why I opted to be a volunteer. We are helping the needy women get a sustainable way of living and also creating a livelihood by giving them the work of stitching cloth bags, thus, serving a dual purpose,” he said. 

Manju Shah, another volunteer in Aundh, has sold 75 cloth bags since morning and, “There are plenty of queries for bulk orders, though there are mixed reactions about the plastic ban,” she said, adding, “Many are concerned about the planet, but at the same time doubting the implementation.” 

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