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Stop opposing nephew on plastic ban: Kadam to Raj

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Hits out at MNS chief for targeting Aaditya Thackeray over fines

A day after the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) put up posters decrying fines imposed on citizens found violating the ban on several plastic items, State Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam came out in support of the move advocated by Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray. Mr. Kadam, a Sena MLA, said MNS chief Raj Thackeray shouldn’t be opposing his nephew’s initiative.

On Saturday, the MNS had put up posters asking the Sena-led Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to not fine citizens as it hasn’t provided them with viable alternatives. The MNS’s opposition to penalising violators has lent a political turn to the environment-friendly ban on plastic items. The civic body is imposing fines between ₹5,000 and ₹25,000, and has collected ₹3.35 lakh from violators in the first two days of the ban coming into effect. A total of ₹2.95 lakh was collected as fines on Monday.

Addressing a press conference, Mr. Kadam said, “The decision to ban plastic was announced nine months ago. If they (MNS) don’t know about it, then it’s not my problem. Raj Thackeray shouldn’t interfere with his nephew’s drive to save the environment. Is he feeling threatened by him now? Aaditya is involved in a noble cause and everyone should come out and support him instead of criticising the ban.” He reiterated that the ban will not trouble common citizens.

He added, “He (Raj) himself doesn’t do anything, but is ready to criticise others who are doing something. Earlier, he used to trouble Uddhavji and now he seems to have decided to target Aaditya.” He said if the MNS interferes with civic officers while taking action against violators, its activists will face action as well. Mr. Kadam said the steep fine amounts were decided upon as a deterrent. “Often, violators don’t mind paying a fine of ₹100 or ₹200.”

He said nothing has been decided on exempting thermocol from the ban for the Ganesh festival. “I have received a request, which I have forwarded to the High Powered Committee for a final decision. There is no question of favouring a particular festival as thermocol is never recycled.”

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2019 11:00:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/stop-opposing-nephew-on-plastic-ban-kadam-to-raj/article24257066.ece

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