Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur Launches A Campaign Against Plastic BagsAll kinds of plastic bags are banned in Himachal Pradesh since October 2, 2009

New Delhi: Celebrations for the 45th World Environment Day, for which India is the global host, has already begun. From Union Environment Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan kick-starting the celebrations through a curtain raiser event held in New Delhi on May 25 to environmentalist Afroz Shah cleaning Mumbai’s Versova beach on May 27, people from all walks of life have come together to #BeatPlasticPollution. Following the same suit, Department of Environment, Science and Technology, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh launched a state wide week long ‘Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao’ campaign on May 27.

The focus of the campaign is to collect plastic waste from both urban and rural areas and use it to produce energy, sensitise people about the harmful effects of plastic waste pollution, tells D C Rana, Director, Department of Environment, Science and Technology, while speaking to NDTV.

Also Read: #QuitPlasticMovement: Every Little Step To Reduce Plastic Consumption, To Reduce Your Plastic Footprint Counts And Goes A Long Way, Says Ex-IT Minister Milind Deora

Giving green signal to the campaign, Chief Minister Jairam Thakur urged citizens of Himachal Pradesh to pledge to make significant contributions in protecting the environment by removing plastic bags from the country and maintaining cleanliness. Along with this, he flagged off a cleanliness initiative in which 800 students and volunteers from different groups and organisations cleaned over 13 Municipal Corporation wards.

Addressing the various students of schools, volunteers, representatives of NGOs, jawans of Home Guard and Fire Services, the Chief Minister, said that pollution caused by plastic was a matter of concern for the whole world and there is a dire need for environment conversation.

Also Read: From Earth Day To Environment Day: This 32-Year-old Woman Walks 1,100 kms To Highlight Dangers Of Plastic Pollution

On the first day of the campaign, 26,255 tonnes of waste was collected of which 8,470 tonnes was reported as plastic waste. The entire waste was then transported to waste-to-energy plant set up in Shimla for further disposal and treatment.

Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur Launches A Campaign Against Plastic Bags
In a bid to beat plastic pollution, students remove plastic from hills in Himachal Pradesh

Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao campaign is not something new. To keep the state, especially hills clean, we have launched numerous campaigns like this in the past. This time the major focus is on plastic, reason being- this year’s World Environment Day theme is Beat Plastic Pollution and plastic is the major pollutant in Himachal. People eat chips, throw the packet on road itself, explains Mr Rana.

Apart from the cleanliness drive, Minister Jairam Thakur released a book on ill effects of plastic pollution. Written in regional language, the book is an a to z guide on plastic.

Also Read: World Environment Day 2018: 5 Things To Know About This Year’s Celebrations On June 5

Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur Launches A Campaign Against Plastic Bags
As India gears up to host 45th World Environment Day, young guns of India collect waste to keep their city spic and span

This is not the first time that Himachal Pradesh has taken a step against plastic. The government had banned the use of any kind of plastic bags in the state on October 2, 2009. But despite the ban, plastic is used in packaging.

When the government declared the ban, manufacturers opposed it and approached court and asked for a stay. Back in 2009, they were granted stay and were allowed to use plastic in packaging, tells Tarun Kapoor, Additional Chief Secretary, Department of Environment, Science and Technology, while speaking to NDTV.

As products like milk, chips, biscuits, and many more come in plastic packaging, it becomes essential for the state to launch such campaigns and keep the state spic and span.

Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur Launches A Campaign Against Plastic Bags
To maintain cleanliness in Himachal Pradesh, people from all walks of life came together and collected waste

To ensure that the collected waste does not end up in some or the other landfill or pollute some other region, the state has installed ‘waste to energy’ plants. Currently, three plants are installed- one in Shimla, which is functional, other two in Kullu and Baddi.

Also Read: Discarded Plastic Wrappers Could Soon Become Fuel For Your Car, Courtesy EDMC’s Plastic Waste To Fuel Project

1 Comment

  1. Good morning
    We are from himachal pradesh distt. Kangra teh dada siba vill chanour. We start to collect plastic from January month to till date in our surrounding area but we are helpless without any kind of dumping zone and collecting from any kind of govt. Agencies. So please suggest us to moving forward..

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