PUNE: Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi on June 5 had announced that the country will eliminate all single-use plastic (below 50 microns) in the country by 2022. The decision will be implemented phase-wise and action will be taken accordingly.
According to a senior official from the Chief Minister’s (CM) Plastic Task Force, “All single-use plastics items like carry bags, straws, water bottles among other items will be slowly eliminated from the country so that people will get into the habit of not using single-use plastic items.”
According to the official, during the celebration of World Environment Day in New Delhi, Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan while referring to Prime Minister Modi’s idea of ‘New India’ by 2022 had said, “We make a solemn pledge that we will eliminate all single-use plastics from our country.”
He also mentioned that an immediate ban in urban Delhi has been announced by PM on June 5. During the function, the PM had also announced a national marine litter action campaign and a programme to measure how much plastic enters India’s coastal waters.
Also, an announcement was made to make 100 national monuments litter-free, including the Taj Mahal. Dr Sameer Joshi, a member of the Environment Committee of Plast India Foundation and member of CM Plastic Task Force, said, “Plastic less than 50 microns is causing more harm to the environment and it should be banned compulsorily. Since the PM has made the announcement, the actions will be implemented and people will also get used to it.”
Vijay Habbu, a member of Plastic Task Force said, “Since, the PM has announced to eliminate all single-use plastic, the State government has to take it seriously. The announcement has brought visibility into the issue.”
He also said, “Plastic above 50 microns and weighing 16 gram should not be banned as it is lucrative and can be used repeatedly. Also, the rag pickers get high value for it. The plastic manufacturers have given a list to the State government of plastic manufacturing companies who manufacture plastic which is below 50 microns and they should shut them. Also, regular drives by local governing bodies should be conducted and people’s participation is also an important factor.”