Ban on plastic bags: 'BBMP ignorant'

But the ban was already imposed by the State government in 1999. However, even after 10 years, it is evident that the rules have fallen flat.

According to the government notification (issued then), the minimum thickness of plastic carry-bags made of virgin plastic or recycled plastic shall not be less than 20 microns.

Bangalore is the third highest populated City in India which generates close to nearly 150 tonnes of plastic waste everyday. Of this, over 80 per cent of the plastic waste is less than 20 microns. Plastic bags that are less than 20 microns go unsegregated at the domestic level as the ragpickers shy away from picking since it is too time consuming.

Besides, their sale value is very low. The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) is involved in implementing the rules of the ban at the manufacturing level. It has authorised 74 industries to manufacture and recycle plastic bags thicker than 20 microns.

“We strictly follow rules of the ban at the manufacturing level. But most of the plastic bags that are less than 20 microns comes from the neighbouring state. We are short of manpower to check the entry of these hazardous plastic bags, which is rampant across the State,” said a senior KSPCB official.

With the BBMP too issuing orders to check plastic bags less than 20 microns, it is to be seen whether it will succeed in checking such bags which the government’s order failed to do.

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