Maharashtra state forms committee to look into plastic ban

Mumbai: Just a day after Bombay High Court rejected a stay on plastic ban, the Maharashtra government has started working on ways to ease the pain of this ban. The government formed 12-member committee consisting of various plastic associations as a first step.

Speaking to the Free Press Journal, chairman and convener for committee on Maharashtra plastic ban, Harpal Singh said, “Around 50 people from different industries meet and discussed the issue with the Secretary (Chief Minister’s office). After listening to all the representations, they formed a committee to discuss on a policy for extended producer responsibility.” This will look at ways to dispose off littered plastic and finding solutions to problems caused due to ban.

Now, the government is looking at solution after imposing the ban, Singh added. This committee formed a day back includes various sections of the plastic industries like manufacturers of plastic bags, thermocol, pet bottles, industrial plastic, spare parts etc.” According to various data collected by the plastic associations, it is estimated that the ban will cost a loss of Rs 8,400 crore of GST revenue for the State. Hiten Bheda, President, All India Plastics Manufacturers’ Association (AIPMA) revealed just recently the government realised the impact of ban on the state. “There is a lacuna in the ban. It is difficult to say what is ban and what is not.”

The plastic associations had raised the issue in the past that the government passed the order on plastic ban without discussing with the stakeholders. Bheda added, “Now, the government realised that most of the plastic products produced today are recycleable, just that there are some processes that have to be followed for it.” The govt is at present studying the issue to take control of the situation. The court in its order gave relief to the end user of plastic by extension of three months but the processors have not got any relief. Bheda stated that they are awaiting for the complete order in order to understand the fine print in it.

Textile industries sobs over plastic ban too

In a meeting that was held at IMC to discuss the challenges of the textile industy, the industry representatives raised concerns over plastic ban.  While the textile commissioner of India, Kavita Gupta urged the industry to see this as an opportunity, many stated it is cause of concern as their end products will suffer. Talking to FPJ, Raju Rathi of Solapur Chamber of Commerce said, “All the stakeholders should be kept in loop when such decision is taken. We don’t have another alternate for plastic. When you say ‘Sabki saath sabka vikas’, it should be followed too.” The textile industry like other industries have been using plastic for packaging.

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