Hailakandi: South Assam’s Hailakandi district officially banned plastic carry bags and other plastic items. The district administration has issued a directive banning the use of plastic bags and other plastic items such as banners, buntings, flex, plastic spoons and cups, plastic flags, cling films and plastic sheets below 50 microns and products made of thermocol with immediate effect.
In an order issued to this effect Monday, District Magistrate Keerthi Jalli has directed the SDOs (Civil), circle officers, assistant commissioners, executive officers and engineers of urban local bodies, officers of health, taxation, food and civil supplies, legal metrology departments and gaon panchayat secretaries to ensure the ban on plastic products, plastic carry bags, plastic containers, etc. across the district which have been causing environmental degradation and health hazards.
Asserting that “use of plastic bags and other plastic items causes blockage of gutters, sewers and drains besides resulting in pollution of water bodies in urban areas,” the DM stated, “No person, including shopkeeper, vendor, wholesaler, retailer, trader, hawker or salesman shall use plastic bags, plastic sheets and multilayered packaging less than 50 microns and plastic cups with less than 60mm in diameter and thickness less than 50 microns, short life PVC and all chlorinated plastic bags, sheets, banners, flex, buntings and plastic flags irrespective of thickness.”
According to the order, “No industry or person shall manufacture, import, supply, store, transport, sale or distribute plastic carry bags, plastic sheets, multilayered packaging less than 50 microns.”
The order, however, exempts plastic carry bags manufactured exclusively for export purpose by a plastic industry located in a Special Economic Zone or Export Oriented Unit; plastic bags, multilayered film or sheet which form an integral part of packaging in which goods are sealed prior to use at manufacturing or processing units; plastic bags and sheets used in forestry and horticulture nurseries and last but not the least plastic bags or plastic used for packaging of medicines.
Penalty for contravention of provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 is punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend up to five years or with fine or both, the order stated.