| Women use polythene bags to carry goods in Cuttack. Picture by Badrika Nath Das |
Cuttack, June 7: One year after imposing a ban on polythene carry bags in this city, the district administration has now decided to launch a vigorous campaign against use of polythene bags in association with the Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC).
The corporation’s imposition of ban on polythene carry bags on the World Environment Day in 2011 failed to serve any purpose as the non-biodegradable item is still being extensively used by people everywhere in the city. The Telegraph had today carried a report on this.
However, CMC joint commissioner L.M. Mohapatra today said: “A lot of traders and shopping malls have started using net cotton bags as an alternative to polythene following imposition of the ban last year. Efforts are still on to spread more awareness in this regard.”
At a high-level meeting held at the district collectorate last evening, the district administration authorities have decided to declare five places — SCB Medical College and Hospital premises, Buxi Bazar, Badambadi, Choudhry Bazaar and Jobra fish market — as polythene-free zones.
Officials of the district administration, the CMC, the chief district medical officer (CDMO) and others were present at the meeting.
“Five places will be declared as polythene-free zones. Stern action will be taken against violators for using the hazardous pollutant in these areas. Surprise raids will also be conducted on every shops, hotels, medicine shops and other roadside kiosks twice every month,” said district collector Girish S.N.
Girish said tax collectors and community officers of the corporation would be engaged to spread awareness and ensure that the use of polythene carry bags was restricted in these identified zones. Councillors of the corporation would also spread awareness among people in their respective wards.
Sources said that a joint squad, comprising officials of the district administration, the CMC, the CDMO and the city police, had been constituted to put a check on the sale, use and consumption of polythene carry bags in the polythene-free zones in the city.
The special squad will conduct surprise raids at different places and will seize polythene carry bags, if any, found in possession of the violators. The squad members can also initiate penal action against the violators.
Following SCB, steps will also be taken to put a check on the use of polythene carry bags at City Hospital and other nursing homes.
The district collector’s office will also be made a polythene-free zone. Subsequently, the district inspectors of schools will also be asked to ensure that the use of polythene carry bags in primary and other schools in their respective jurisdictions is completely stopped.