Little success for plastic ban as B'luru flouts it with impunity

Little success for plastic ban as B'luru flouts it with impunity

Shops say they're clearing bag stocks, people don't mind using them

Little success for plastic ban as B'luru flouts it with impunity

It’s been a month since plastic bags and plastic items were banned, but one can still see them being used in Bengaluru. Government departments still have a long way to go in making the ban successful.

Around 50% of garbage heaps still comprise plastic in the City. Many shops, departmental stores, malls, restaurants still use plastic carry bags. Restaurants pack parcels with plastic containers and carry bags. Many roadside vendors use plastic bags to pack fruits, vegetables and flowers.

Many branded stores and malls use plastic carry bags and charge customers Rs 3 or 5 for a bag. Pharmaceutical companies still pack medicines and sanitary napkins in black plastic bags.

Owners of commercial establishments say that they have to clear their stock of plastic bags and that customers do not mind the bags, when they are handy and easily available.

Strict implementation has been seem in places like the central business district and upscale residential areas like Commercial Street, Jayanagar, Koramangala, Malleswaram and BTM Layout. But, little regulation is seen on the outskirts of the City and newly added CMC and TMC areas.

“I purchased groceries and the shopkeeper gave me a huge carry bag. When I told him that it was banned, he told me that he had to clear stock. I did not mind it as it is handy in garbage disposal,” said Aditi M, a resident of Magadi Road.

“I took breakfast parcel from a restaurant and saw everybody taking plastic bags. The man at the parcel counter packed items in polythene like always. Restaurants do not insist that we carry our own containers. Parcels are given in plastic boxes and carry bags,” said Bharati N, a resident of Gandhinagar.

However, some commercial units have shifted to cloth and jute bags and insist that customers carry their own shopping bags.

This is, however, limited to certain brands and customers who are environmentally conscious. These constitute a small percentage, said an official of the environment department.

“I went to a mall with my family and the person at the billing counter told me to use my shopping bag or buy one from the store, which could be returned and get the money partially reimbursed. The ban is working,” said Atul M, a resident of Banashankari.

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