Time for authorities to act tough; will they?

Time for authorities to act tough; will they?

Plastic ban: Chamundi Hill awaits MCC magic

Could be better:  A board on plastic ban, put up at the archgate on Chamundi Hills road. DH PHOTOSThough the authorities concerned have at least succeeded in convincing traders at the hill shrine to do away with plastic bags, it’s exactly opposite when it comes to the devotees. The latter blatantly carry the bag inside and exits with ease.

Incidentally, it was in March 2011 the Mysore City Corporation (MCC) effected the ban on plastic below 40 micron thickness.

Within a short span of time, the local body has succeeded in bringing an awareness about using the banned material, raiding shopkeepers without any break and seizing the goods.

In contrast, the Chamundi Hill though effected ban on all types of plastic on July 27, 2005 during the tenure of then Deputy Commissioner S Selvakumar, plastic still appears, albeit in a few places.

When enquired, an officer said, “We have been constantly monitoring the implementation of the ban and have succeeded in checking the usage to an extent, if not fully. Most of the traders here are small time businessmen.” With ‘ashadha pooja’ all set to commence from July 1 (Friday), it will definitely pose a biggest challenge to curb the usage of plastic, the officer admitted on condition of anonymity. According to a board put up at the arch gate on Chamundi Hill road, the area is declared as plastic free zone and all the vehicles are requested to stop at the checking point. Leave alone stopping the vehicles, no efforts were made either to open such checking points or inspect the vehicle.

When Deccan Herald made a reality check, a booth that was earlier used by tourist police guide has been left unused. When the ban was announced, the authorities concerned had mooted an idea to use the same booth as checking point and put up the same near the wireless repeater’s station on the hills.  Unlike graffitis that occupy prime space in other hills, from the foot to top, most of the boulders and prominent places on the hill road here proudly announces that- you are entering no plastic zone, say no to plastic for better environment etc.,  However, it would be not too late for any keen observer to discover that, the order remains only on papers.

Operation ‘stray animals’ 

With the most awaited event of the year ‘Ashadha pooja’ nearing, the authorities are leaving no stone unturned to make it a memorable occasion for the devotees.

Stray animals like cattle, dogs and monkeys are being shown the way out of the shrine first.

Already 20 cattle, most of them bulls  have been caught and let out of the hills and still seven more are there, an officer said. Dogs and monkeys will be caught in a day or two.

This (catching animals) is being done in view of the safety  of the visitors, as stray menace poses danger during huge gathering of the people. It’s for the second time during the past three years, it is being taken up, according to the officer. That apart, arrangements are being made to distribute prasada only at three parks, and adequate drinking water supply during the period. The hill daily requires two lakh litres of water.

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