Mumbai: The Nationalist Congress Party today hit out at the Maharashtra government over its ban on plastic items, accusing it of having imposed the ban without conducting a prior study of how it would affect citizens.
He alleged that the plastic ban, which was causing hardship to the common man, was imposed to get political mileage.
He also accused the state government of giving in to the pressure of foreign companies by not banning non-recyclable plastic items used by these firms.
Addressing a press conference here, NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said, “The government has not conducted any elaborate study before announcing the ban. It is merely aimed at getting political mileage and is putting the common man to hardship.”
He further questioned whether the motive of the ban was to protect the environment or to fill the coffers of the ruling parties.
Hitting out further, he said, “Things which are reused will be banned and those which cannot be recycled are not banned.”
Alleging that non-recyclable items were not banned due to pressure from foreign firms, Malik said that plastic used in the packaging of mouth fresheners, biscuits, toothpaste, confectionery etc are not banned.
“But plastic spoons, glasses, carry bags, which can be reused, have been banned,” Malik said.
On March 23, the state government imposed a ban on manufacturing, use, sale, distribution and storage of plastic materials such as one-time-use bags, spoons, plates, PET and PETE bottles and thermocol items.
As per the government’s notification, the fine for first-time and second-time offenders will be Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 respectively. A third violation will attract a fine of Rs 25,000 and a jail term of three months.
The ban came into effect on June 23 and has seen civic bodies across the state collect fines, totalling several lakh rupees, from violators so far.