GUWAHATI: The use of single-use plastic items banned by the Assam Pollution Control Board (PCB) a year ago is still rampant in the markets here.
Local residents claim that rules are being violated right under the nose of the enforcement agencies.
The Kamrup (Metro) district administration and the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) are the enforcing agencies of the plastic ban, and they periodically conduct raids in the city markets.
On Tuesday, the PCB and GMC officials conducted a raid at Fancy Bazar, the state’s business hub, and seized over 600 kg of banned single-use plastic items, including glass, carry bags and plates.
A similar drive was also carried out at different locations of the city on April 1. Nearly 200 kg of single-use plastic items were seized then and several traders were fined.
A PCB official said there is a need for strict enforcement of the ban and the public must also cooperate with the government in this.
“Drives against the sale or use of single-use plastic are not enough. Guwahati is a big city and round-the-clock monitoring and enforcement of the ban are not easy to carry out,” the official added.
Meanwhile, Pankaj Agarwal, who went to Fancy Bazar to shop on Thursday, said, “Most of the traders hide the single-use plastic products when the inspection team visits the markets.” He urged the authorities concerned to have a mechanism to prevent the manufacturing of single-use plastic items, their entry from other states as well as sale and storage. He said the authorities should take strict action against the violators of the ban order.
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