Punitive action for violating single-use plastic ban starts from Monday

The ban on single-use plastic items was imposed starting 1 July, following which the government had organised workshops and fairs to create awareness about the ban and promote alternatives to plastic items

Photo: Pixabay

Monday onwards, a control room set up by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) will start shutting down units that violate the ban on 19 identified single-use plastic (SUP) items.

All complaints related to the violation of the ban will be sent to the control room. These complaints will be registered, and an enforcement team will be assigned to take immediate action against the violators.

Under the Environment Protection Act, 1986, the punitive action will include a fine of up to Rs 1 lakh or a jail term of up to five years or both.

Besides keeping a check on the manufacturing of SUP items, the DPCC will also welcome complaints about the use of SUPs in markets and other public places. “We will transfer it to the municipal bodies concerned”, an official stated.

Grievances regarding the infractions can also be lodged through the Green Delhi application of the Delhi government or the “SUP-CPCB” application of the Central Pollution Control Board.

When the ban was imposed starting 1 July, Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai had stated that the Delhi government will be lenient towards the violators for the first ten days. Instead, the government would focus on creating awareness about the ban, while promoting environment-friendly alternatives. A three-day fair was organised at the Thyagraj Stadium here to promote these alternatives.

He also stated that notices and warning would be sent to such violators till 10 July, and punitive action against repeat violators would be imminent thereafter.The revenue department and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee have constituted 33 and 15 teams, respectively, to ensure the enforcement of the ban.

While the DPCC will ensure compliance in conforming areas, the MCD and other local bodies will supervise its implementation in the informal area by acting against the defaulting units according to their bylaws. The SUP items seized during the enforcement drive will be incinerated in waste-to-energy plants to ensure they do not end up in landfills or clog water bodies.

Delhi generates 1,060 tonnes of plastic waste per day. SUP is estimated to be 5.6 per cent (or 56 kg per metric tonnes) of the total solid waste in the capital.

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