Maharashtra’s plastic ban: what is banned and what is not

The BMC has trained 210 staffers for levying penalties

June 25, 2018 08:35 pm | Updated 08:46 pm IST

Plastic bags form 15% of solid waste collected daily in Navi Mumbai.

Plastic bags form 15% of solid waste collected daily in Navi Mumbai.

Mumbai on June 23 became the first city in India to have implemented plastic ban. The Maharashtra government in March this year, issued a notification prohibiting usage of all sinle-use plastic bags, besides also banning the manufacturing and sale of such plastic bags.

Although the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) claimed to have readiness to deal with the implementation, there is much ambiguity among the city dwellers on the dos and don'ts. The BMC staff even organised an exhibition from June 22 to 24 to showcase alternatives to the banned products. The exhibition also included self-help groups entrepreneurs along recyclers, who explained if products can be recycled at home or need to be sent to agencies if accumulated in large quantity.

What are the banned products?

Mumbaikars have to let go using plastic bags, disposable plastic cutlery, disposable thermocol items, plastic wrap used for packaging and storage, non-woven polypropyleme bags, plastic pouches for storing liquid, plastic packaging for food items, plastic and thermocol decoration.

What can be used?

Small PET bottles can be used, packaging materials for medicines, solid waste, and agriculture sector, bags used to plant nurseries, food grade virgin plastic bags over 50 microns, milk pouches over 50 microns, wrapping at manufacturing stage.

What's the penalty if found using banned plastic products?

The penalty for violating the ban starts from ₹5,000 for first-time offence, ₹10,000 for second time and for third time ₹25,000 fine with three months jail term. If one fails to pay the penalty, the civic body can file a prosecution complaint before the court. The court then will decide the amount to be paid.

What's authourities doing to help?

The BMC has trained 210 staffers for levying penalties and their list is available on its website along with a list of collection centres where people can dispose of plastic.

The State is not directly providing alternatives to banned items and has relied on people for solutions. Read more here.

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