State issues brochure to clear plastic ban confusion

Neha Basudkar
Friday, 6 July 2018

Sameer Joshi, a member of the Plastic Task Force, said, “Initially the government had declared a blanket ban on plastic. Then they slowly started exempting several items from the ban."

PUNE: The State government has now clarified the parameters of what items of plastic are banned and what is exempted through a brochure. According to the experts of the Plastic Task Force, this will definitely help to clarify the confusion among people and traders.

Sameer Joshi, a member of the Plastic Task Force, said, “Initially the government had declared a blanket ban on plastic. Then they slowly started exempting several items from the ban, as it caused serious confusion among people and small traders. This was a necessary step to be taken by the State government so that the confusion could be cleared.”

Akhilesh Bhargav, another member of the Committee, said, “Even before releasing the Government Resolution (GR) on the ban we had informed the State government not to put a blanket ban straight away but to implement in phases.” “Later, they got to know that people are facing several problems due to the blanket ban as there was no alternative to plastic so they decided to exempt a few things from the ban. But now since the confusion over the plastic ban is cleared, people should follow the law,” he added.

Vijay Habbu, another member of the Committee, said, “Exempting PET bottles of holding liquid capacity below 200 ml will not be accepted as in most of the places it is used and it is totally recyclable. This will lead to the use of glass extensively which is more dangerous for the environment and humans.”

WHAT THE BROCHURE SAYS
BANNED PLASTIC ITEMS
- PET bottles and pouches of liquid holding capacity below 200ml.
- All kinds of plastics bags with or without handles are banned including plastic bags, non-woven polypropylene bags and shopping bags. 
- One time use items made from thermocol including disposable things like plates, cups, glass, forks, spoons, bowls, and other such items. 
- Plastic bags made from compostable materials. 
- Plastic and thermocol used for any decoration items. 
- Also, plastic tiffins extensively used in restaurants and hotels for home deliveries and parcels along with straws.

ITEMS THAT ARE EXEMPTED
- Plastic used to import things.
- Primary and secondary packaging above 50 microns. 
- Guidelines including the name of the manufacturer, recycling code, number of times it is recycled and other such things should be mentioned on the packaging.
- PET and PETE bottles holding liquid capacity above 200 ml. 
- Plastic bags made from compostable materials can be only used for horticulture, floriculture, medical and solid waste management. 
- Milk bags above 50 microns. 
- Cardboard boxes. 
- Multi-layered packaging is also exempted including packets of chips, shampoo sachets, toothpaste, oil packets, chocolate packets etc.
- Plastic used for homemade products. 
- Thermocol boxes used to keep fishes. 
- Stationery items made by plastic used in schools and offices. 
- Raincoats, plastic sheets and plastic cover.

Along with it, the State government has implemented to charge fine for violating the ban which is Rs 5,000 for the first-time offence, Rs 10,000 for the second time and Rs 25,000 for the third offence or a three-month jail term or both. Manufacturers, on the other hand, stand to lose their license.

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