After a hiatus of nearly one year, the civic authorities of Kochi are reattempting to contain the plastic menace in the city.

This time the civic authorities plan to ban plastic below 50 micron from March 1. Pledges to discourage and drop the use of banned plastic will also be organised. Traders will be asked to display stickers at their organisations that banned plastic will not be used.

The earlier drives against the sale and use of plastic below 30 and 40 microns have flopped as the Corporation could not implement it effectively.

That time, the Corporation had carried out extensive campaigns in the city and gave one-month time for the traders to sell off the earlier procured bags.

Barring a few instances of the civic authorities slapping fine and seizing a few packets of plastic carry bags, the campaign could not achieve much in the city.

As the drive fizzled out, plastic carry bags of all hue and thickness reappeared in the city. It was also widely used and discarded. The disposed bags found their way to the city drains blocking the free flow of flood water.

While admitting that the previous drives against the plastic ban was not effective as planned, Health Standing Committee chairman T.K. Ashraf said that the Kochi Corporation was serious in their approach this time.

The district administration, traders and the civic authority are coming together this time to curb the menace. The Corporation will include the stipulation that traders will not sell or used the banned materials when they renew their licence documents, he said.

Prosecution measures will also be initiated against the offenders and the civic authority would not allow any one to circumvent the ban, he said.

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