Cotton & jute replacement for polythene

Fight plastic

Patna: The Sitamarhi district administration has come to the help of polythene bag wholesalers who have lost business because of the ban on plastic bags of less than 50 microns thickness.

District magistrate Ranjit Kumar Singh told The Telegraph: "Over a dozen wholesalers recently met me, explaining their problems. After that I asked banks to provide them loans to start business of making cotton and jute bags."

One of the wholesalers said on condition of anonymity: "The stringent order of the district administration on polythene bags forced us to dump our stocks in Nepal. But we need alternative source for continuing our business. The district magistrate had a positive response to our problem and directed the banks to provide us loan to start cotton and jute bags manufacturing work."

After implementing the ban on August 15, the district administration launched a massive drive to seize polythene bags with thickness of less than 50 microns. So far over 40 sacks of such bags have been seized from different places.

"The raids are continuing and two days ago, we seized three sacks from Sonbarsa," said Singh.

Before the drive was launched, the district administration took the help of self-help groups of Jeevika (Bihar Rural Livelihoods Promotion Society) project to make cloth and paper bags.

Singh said the self-help groups have sold over 3 lakh bags till now.

"Our efforts have been visible in the local markets where vegetable vendors or people selling non-vegetarian items have stopped giving polythene bags, forcing people to bring their own bags. Even clothes shops have stopped giving polythene bags to customers," said Singh, adding that in second round of the plastic ban to be implemented from October 2, all non-recyclable plastic products will be banned.


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