Shimla, October 2, 2009: Jute and cotton bags are back in demand as Himachal Pradesh say goodbye to non-biodegrable polythene bags on Friday. In 1999, Himachal Pradesh was the first state to ban recycled colour polythene bags. All kinds of polythene bags are currently banned in Jammu and Kashmir,
Delhi and Chandigarh. Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said traders had been given more than one and a half month’s time to switch over to biodegrable bags. Initially, the ban was to come into force on August 15, as per a Cabinet decision taken in June 2009. Opposing the decision, traders had met the CM and asked for a month’s time to exhaust their stock of carrybags.
Under the provisions of the Himachal Pradesh Non-Biodegrable Garbage (Control) Act 1995, violators of the ban, including citizens, tourists, traders and commercial establishments, will be punished with a fine of Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000. The notification issued by the HP Pollution Control Board says the dumping of
used polythene carry bags at public places and hill slopes will also be an offence.
The board has proposed to install hoardings and display boards at the state’s entry points and other places. Tourists coming to the state on October 2 will be given jute and cotton bags as a symbolic gesture. – Express India
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