Government to ban use of plastic bags below 51 microns

In public interest: Social Welfare Minister M. Kandasamy holding a meeting with officials to discuss about the ban on plastic carry bags in Puducherry on Wednesday.  

After a failed attempt, the territorial administration will once again try to impose a ban on manufacture and use of plastic bags below 51 microns.

Announcing the decision at a press conference here on Wednesday, Social Welfare Minister M. Kandasamy, who also holds the portfolio of Science, Technology and Environment, said after taking into account the environmental hazard caused by plastic, the government has decided to ban plastic below 51 microns.

The manufactures and traders would be given six months time to shift to alternate products, post which the government would impose fine on manufacturers and traders who use plastic carry bags, he said after chairing a meeting of officials from various departments.

If manufacturers or traders were found to be using the material after the ban comes into force, the government would impose a spot fine and prosecute the violators.

As per the Food Safety Act, hoteliers are not supposed to pack hot items in plastic items due to potential health hazards. The government has advised hoteliers to abstain from packing ready to eat food items in butter paper and instead they should use plantain leaf for packing hot food items, he said.

The government would rope in women-run self help groups to manufacture alternate materials.

It is not the first time that the territorial administration had embarked on a mission to ban plastic items below 51 microns. In 2009, the government issued an order banning the material but it did not succeed due to poor implementation.

To a question on port operations, the Minister said works are going on as per plan and the government would announce the date of commencement only after completion of dredging.

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Printable version | Jan 14, 2021 12:47:08 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/government-to-ban-use-of-plastic-bags-below-51-microns/article19723526.ece

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