Maharashtra is set to intensify its crackdown on those violating the plastic ban. State Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam announced in the legislative Assembly on Monday that he had instructed officials to initiate action against plastic manufacturers violating the ban on single-use products.
While the ban has been in force since June 23, 2018, Kadam admitted that the enforcement of the model code of conduct for the Lok Sabha elections had impacted its implementation. But he said that crack teams have resumed action against the use of banned plastic in crowded market places. “You will see the impact of this within the next eight days,” said Kadam, while replying to a query raised during the Question Hour.
Meanwhile, during the discussion on the issue, the Shiv Sena minister had a face-off with BJP MLAs. BJP’s Mangalprabhat Lodha complained that a number of businesses had shut down on account of the ban and sought to know if those pushed out of employment will be compensated. BJP’s chief whip Raj Purohit too echoed this demand, while also pushing for an extension of the deadline before initiating action. Taking a swipe at both the legislators, Kadam said that “ban had been imposed to overcome the plastic menace.”
He said that the crackdown will continue as planned and that there will not be any further extensions.There was ruckus in the House following Kadam’s reply to a query raised by BJP’s Manisha Choudhari.
Arguing that the ban had pushed several new start-ups into losses, she asked if the government would allow setting up the biopolymer plants as an alternative. In reply, Kadam said, “Your son is into plastic trade and had sustained losses,” he said.
While BJP MLAs demanded that the mention regarding her son be removed from the record, Deputy Speaker Vijay Auti said that he will examine the record to check if there was anything objectionable. He did not pass any ruling in this regard. However, Kadam later said that Chaudhari can raise the issue with the technical committee.
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