There’s just three left for the plastic ban in Mumbai to come into force. From June 23, Mumbaikars will have to pay fine if caught with plastic bags. But, in good news for Mumbaikars, the BMC is reconsidering the cost of the fine which is currently said to be Rs 5000. According to Mid-Day, the BMC has proposed to drop the fine to a minimum of Rs 200 for first-time offenders. Starting with a range of Rs 200-Rs 500 for citizens and hawkers, the penalty varies for general stores, fruit, and milk vendors, as well as hotels and malls.
Nidhi Choudhary, deputy municipal commissioner, told the leading daily, “Up to Rs 5,000 means we can impose penalties below that amount too. Rs 5,000 is a huge amount, and practically no one carries that much with them. Asking for such a big amount could lead to conflict between citizens and officials.”
She further said that the BMC is authorised to decide on the fine amount for the effective implementation of the ban, but the proposal of reducing the fine is not new and was prepared three months ago. The Law and Revenue Committee chairperson, Suvarna Karanje told the leading daily, “We are in favour of the fine starting at Rs 200, as it is more practical. No one carries Rs 5,000 with them. We are going to clear the proposal without any opposition.”
The plastic ban was passed by Maharashtra government in March. A fine of Rs 5000 was recommended for first-time offenders, which raised many questions.