Gutkha and and pan masala worth Rs 29,22,020 was destroyed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Tuesday at Laxmi Keshav Udyog in Kondhwa.
FDA Joint Commissioner Shashikant Kekare said the material was destroyed after its disposal was temporarily stopped at the solid waste plant facility at Ramtekdi .
Kekare said,Gutkha and pan masala worth Rs 2.17 crore had been seized in Pune district since the ban on the tobacco products since September last year. A total of 26 cases are in court and 45 FIRs have been filed. Earlier,gutkha was being stored at the small FDA office and an arrangement was made with Rochem Green Energy private limited to dispose the banned substances.
Plant manager Avinash Gawade said PMC had handed over the land at Ramtekdi on a Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis. While eventually the plant will be able to dispose 700 tonnes of garbage,in the first phase around 250 tonnes garbage will be disposed daily to generate electricity. Cartons of gutkha are also mixed with the solid waste. However,temporarily we are unable to destroy gutkha, he said.