Mohali is set to impose a ban on the sale and manufacture of plastic bags from April 1 along with the rest of Punjab.
The Mohali Municipal Corporation is creating awareness by sending text messages to residents to inform them about the ban.
Mohali commissioner Uma Shankar Gupta said: “Fifteen teams have been set up that will keep a check on any violations. Efforts are on to make people aware and discourage the use of plastic bags.”
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The penalties for first timers – Rs 2,000 for an individual found using plastic bags and Rs 20,000 for a shopkeeper.
Mohali has not learnt much from Chandigarh and Panchkula where the ban was imposed earlier. Here the authorities as well as traders are looking towards using non- woven bags that have been banned in Chandigarh.
The plastic industry in Mohali is unhappy with the decision, but are sure that they will find a solution to it. Like in Chandigarh, these industries plan to increase manufacture of other plastic products.
The president of Mohali Beopar Mandal, Kulwant Singh, welcomes the decision. “It is a good initiative by the administration to reduce pollution caused by plastic,” he said.
The plastic ban in Chandigarh caused around 60 per cent loss to the plastic industry with eight manufacturing plants shutting shop completely according to Jarnail Singh, who owns one manufacturing plant in Chandigarh and Mohali each.
He said: “The ban will lead to more unemployment. The authorities do not care about us, they should reimburse the industries as machinery worth crores could go in waste.”