Silchar, Aug. 6: Both shopkeepers and consumers are blatantly flouting the ban on the use of polythene and plastic bags clamped by the Cachar district magistrate on July 1.
The ban came into force early last month with the staff of the regional environment office here, police and executive magistrates from the district administration embarking on a combined drive.
The ban on the storage, use or sale of polythene and plastic packets of less than 40 microns thickness lost its steam after a few days, thus allowing the shopkeepers to pack the goods in tiny polythene packets with total impunity.
The small plastic packets, though very handy, are considered hazardous when they are dumped into the garbage bins, which end up in the drains. These packets are not biodegradable in nature.
The key shops in retail hubs in Nazirpatty, Central road, Janiganj, Ranghirkhari road and Fatak bazaar were surveyed, and everywhere the shopkeepers showed a disdain towards the ban in force by flouting it openly.
Cachar deputy commissioner Gokul Mohan Hazarika, when asked about the failure of the ban, admitted that the administration did not have the requisite staff to keep a watch on such open and brazen use of the small polythene packets. He stressed the urgent need for making people aware about the hazards of the use of polythene packets.
Sudhir Roy, a shopkeeper, made it clear that the polythene packets are four times more expensive than paper bags.