BBMP officials, members of local bodies can enforce ban
The State Cabinet on Thursday cleared a final notification to ban the manufacture and use of various kinds of plastic items including carry bags, banners, buntings, flags, flexes, plates, thermocol cups, spreading sheets, among others, irrespective of their thickness.
The ban will come into effect once the notification is gazetted. The Cabinet, however, has not fixed a timeframe to gazette the notification, sources said. There was no official briefing after the cabinet meeting as the legislature is in session.
The Forest, Ecology and Environment Department in October 2015, had issued a draft notification to ban manufacture, supply, storage, transportation, sales, distribution and use of nearly a dozen kinds of plastic items. Products made out of thermocol and microbeads are also included in the list. The department had called for objections and suggestions from the public within 30 days.
The department received as many as 1,600 objections and suggestions. According to officials in the department most of the objections were plastic manufacturers and traders associations who felt that the plastic ban was not practical. Moreover, it would hit the livelihood of thousands of persons and their families working in the plastic industry. The traders in their objections had also pointed out that hundreds of them had availed loans to start work in the plastic industry and that they would go bankrupt if the ban is put in place.
The Cabinet, on Thursday, approved the final notification that seeks to impose the ban under Section 5 of the Environment Protection Act. Sources said that no major changes have been made in the final notification.
According to the notification, top administrative officials in the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, deputy commissioners of districts, health officers, members of local bodies in the State, assistant commissioners, tahsildars in taluks, environmental officers of the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board, officers of the Commercial Taxes Department and Food and Civil Supplies Department will be conferred with the power to enforce the ban.
Legal action would be initiated against those who violate the ban and cases booked in the jurisdictional court of law as per section 19 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
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