Come July, those who are buying or selling plastic bags in Goa will have to pay a hefty fine of upto Rs 5,000. The drastic measure was announced by Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar today, as part of the government’s efforts to keep clean the coastal state that lures visitors from all over the world.
Parrikar appealed to the people to inculcate the habit of carrying cloth bags while out on shopping, as it used to be the practice before plastic came in a big way. “We need to do away with plastic bags. From July onwards if we find anyone selling or buying plastic bags he will have to pay the fine,” he said at a function here.
“The fine won’t be a meagre amount. It will be hefty. It might be upto Rs 5,000 (each time). We might give some relaxation in the beginning in terms of the amount of fine, but we are strictly going to implement the ban,” he said.
Parrikar said the state government cannot perform if citizens behave irresponsibly. “We expect the government to provide clean cities. However, we keep on throwing garbage on the roadside,” he said.
The state government has taken up an initiative to clear the highways of the garbage piles, but it is noticed that soon after the trash is removed, it resurfaces, he said.
“We have now provided work stations to collect garbage on the highways. I appeal to people to hand over their garbage at these work stations rather than just throwing it on the roadside,” he said.
Parrikar said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Swachh Bharat’ (clean India) initiative is picking up across the country. “There were certain elements who initially mocked the concept. But if you see now, the people have started talking about it and working for Swachh Bharat,” he said.