New Delhi: From June 23, India’s second-populous state Maharashtra will implement the much-awaited state-wide plastic ban and start penalising all those found using plastic products, including single-use disposable items with a fine of Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 for first and second-time offence. A third-time offender will be fined Rs 25,000 and can also face three months imprisonment. The state government enforced the ban on March 23 and had given the manufacturers, distributors, and consumers a period of three months to dispose their existing stock and come up with alternatives to plastic usage. Taking a step ahead for effective implementation of the ban, showcase alternatives to plastic and guide people on how to make a plastic ban a success, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has organised a three-day exhibition starting today till June 24 at the National Sports Club Of India, Worli.
Here are the highlights from the BMC’s exhibition attended by Actor Ajay Devgn and Kajol, Aaditya Thackeray, the president of Yuva Sena, Ajoy Mehta, BMC’s Municipal Commissioner, Nidhi Chaudhari, Head Anti-Encroachment Department of BMC
Here are the top highlights from the event
- Nidhi Chaudhari, Head Anti-Encroachment Department of BMC during the exhibition highlighted that till now 45 lakh kilos of banned plastic items have been collected in Mumbai. Highlighting the steps taken by the BMC, she added, “We have implemented the toll-free numbers for queries related to the ban, plastic centres have been made for collecting the banned items for effective recycling. Along with this, have deployed more than 200 inspectors who will ensure the effective implementation of the plastic ban in the city.”
- ‘Our main motive is not to make people stop using plastic. But, pass on a strong message that it is possible to live a life without destroying our environment. We need to be careful in what environment we leave for our future generation,’ said Ajoy Mehta, BMC’s Municipal Commissioner during the exhibition.
- Ajay Devgn’s says the ban is late, but he is happy, he added, “I’m happy the ban is here, though it is late, but at least we have started the initiative. This ban will only be effective when people will pledge to make this green switch. Let us all give a nice future too our children.”
- Actor Kajol lent her support to the plastic ban and said, “Why are we here today? We have come to see practical reasons to give up plastic from our life. It is not going to be that difficult, not impossible to give up plastic. One of the first steps to save the environment is to ‘say no to plastics’.
- Aaditya Thackeray, the president of Yuva Sena and the man behind the plastic ban said, “Implementing the plastic ban and segregation is a huge task. Mumbai floods recently gave everyone a reality check – 36,000 litre of flood water couldn’t be stored in stormwater drains due to plastic waste. Waterlogging led to floods in the city. And that’s when I called our Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam and said that before next monsoon we need to ban plastic. It wasn’t an overnight ban. Plastic isn’t bad as such but the problem is the way it is discarded. We don’t need to ban on all kinds of plastic but some we need a ban on some items.”
Thanking the Swachh Warriors – Actor and UN Environment Dia Mirza, Actor Juhi Chawla and UN Earth Champion Afroz Shah, Aaditya Thackeray said, “They all contributed in this ban. I would like to thank the Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam as well and other ministers who have succumbed to pressures in pushing the Maharashtra Plastic Ban. Today’s exhibition is very important. It is necessary for people to see the alternatives that are available in the market. This will help them, make a green switch.”
- Explaining that the plastic ban is not the sudden ban, Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam during the exhibition said, “Whatever the decision high court gives, we will see, but today, we have completed three months since the announcement of the plastic ban in March 23. I went to all civic bodies across Maharashtra and met them personally. I discussed with all the municipalities and they all came on board. They even gave suggestions. I have also sent six teams to six states who have banned plastic to study their policies and steps. The plastic ban was criticized by many for the sudden implementation. But it is not an overnight announcement like demonetisation.”
- Approximately 60 organisations today displayed eco-friendly products. From eco-friendly cutlery to a recycled nursery for the plant lovers and cloth bags, many greener alternatives were present at the exhibition.