It will mark the start of the drive for a complete ban on plastics that the civic body intends to implement from January 1

A city Corporation council meeting here on Friday decided that a mass awareness programme on the total boycott of plastic carry bags will be inaugurated by Cardinal Baselios Cleemis at Gandhi Park on Saturday morning. It will mark the start of the drive for a complete ban on plastics that the civic body intends to implement from January 1.

Mayor K. Chandrika said the first stage of the anti-plastic drive would focus on publicity and ban on plastic carry bags.

The discussion on waste management touched upon the installation of Radio Frequency Identification tags in houses.

Most United Democratic Front (UDF) councillors said it served no purpose. Kesavadasapuram councillor Suresh Kumar said the tags had been installed in only a tiny percentage of houses within the city limits.

Deputy Mayor G. Happykumar said the tags were installed in homes over a year ago to record the attendance of Kudumbasree workers. “Since the Vilappilsala waste-treatment plant was shut down soon after the tags were set up in most houses, they ceased to be functional,” he said.

Works standing committee chairperson V.S. Padmakumar raised the issue of the long-winded process that the elderly had to go through to avail themselves of their pension. “The government’s insistence that an Aadhaar registration is required, plus a bank account, has made it extremely difficult for many to receive their pension,” he said.

Others echoed this statement, saying there were discrepancies in the criteria, and another survey was necessary to ascertain the beneficiaries.

The issue of shortage of ambulances was raised by health standing committee chairperson S. Pushpalatha. Since two ambulances were in the workshop, a resolution was adopted to take back the ones from Government Hospital, Peroorkada (as it had been upgraded to a district hospital), and the Pettah Veterinary Centre.