Shops and establishments that continue to use forms of plastic that have already been banned run the risk of their trade licences being cancelled.
The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) council, which met on Saturday to discuss solid waste management, passed a resolution to this effect.
Mayor R. Sampath Raj said that though plastic in all forms, such as disposable plates, spoons, cups and covers, have been banned, many shops and establishments in the city continue to use them. They will be given a week to switch to eco-friendly alternatives, following which the BBMP’s health officials will cancel their trade licences.
Ruling party leader M. Shivaraju said that the BBMP had recently seized around 30 tonnes of plastic and levied fines amounting to Rs. 40 lakh. He suggested that instead of raiding shops and establishments, the civic body should clamp down on plastic manufacturing units. “Once the plastic menace is controlled, the city’s garbage problem can be easily tackled,” he said.
To bring in transparency in solid waste management, the BBMP council has decided to call for fresh tenders. After approving a resolution in this regard, the Mayor said that three years ago, due to stringent conditions, no contractor had come forward to apply for the tender and that civic body had been managing it.
BBMP Commissioner Manjunath Prasad would look into framing the conditions again.
Opposition Leader Padmanabha Reddy pointed out that the BBMP is spending Rs. 7.75 to dispose one kg of municipal waste. Though crores are being spent on solid waste management, the city is still littered with garbage, he said.
To prevent vacant sites from becoming dumping grounds, the BBMP is exploring the Bengaluru Development Authority’s tax model where a tax of nearly Rs. 14,000 for every vacant site is levied on the owner.
Jayanagar MLA Sowmya Reddy suggested the BBMP form a special task force to prevent indiscriminate dumping of waste in vacant sites and in street corners.