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Delhi government imposes blanket ban on plastic bags

“Delhi is all set to become a plastic free state as the Cabinet has given its nod to a proposal for imposing a blanket ban on manufacture, sale, storage and usage of plastic bags…

in the capital city under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986,” Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit told reporters after the Cabinet meeting.


The MCD, NDMC, and Delhi police were being instructed to strictly enforce the ban. The principal act in this regard was amended in 2008, following which the thickness of plastic bags had been increased from the existing 20 microns to 40 microns for the manufactures.

The government had forbidden the sale, storage and usage of all kinds of plastic bags in certain notified places on January 7, 2009 as per the direction of the Delhi High Court.

The notified places included all 5 and 4 star hotels, hospitals with 100 or more beds except the use of plastic bags as prescribed under Bio-Medical Waste Management and Handling Rules-1998, all restaurant and eating places having seating capacity of more than 50 seats.

All fruits and vegetable outlets of Mother Dairy, all shops in main market and local shopping centres and all retail and wholesale outlets of branded chain of outlets selling different consumer products including fruits and vegetables were also included.

“It was observed after the ban that the vegetable/fruits vendors daily and weekly subzi market etc were still using the plastic bags. In view of this, the government decided to promote alternative bags, carry out awareness campaign and declare the paper/alternate bags manufacturing as a household industry,” Ms Dikshit added.

Further fines ranging from Rs 10,000 to Rs 1 lakh has been imposed on the violators. The government has since decided to repeal the existing Delhi Degradable Plastic Bags (Manufacturing, Sales and Usage) and Garbage (Controlled) Act 2000 along with Rules and Notification issued thereunder, and to issue a notification under the Environment(Protection) Act-1986 for complete ban on manufacturing and sales, storage and usage of all kinds of plastic bags.

Further the Cabinet also discussed on formulation of a policy on removal/relocation/regularisation un-authorised structure on the direction of the Supreme Court.

The government decided to seek suggestions from all the departments concerned to make it a comprehensive policy. The apex court had issued directions to all states to file the status of their earlier direction that no un-authorised construction shall be carried out or be permitted in the name of temple, church, mosque or gurudwara on streets, public parks or other public places.

There were 238 such structures in Delhi. The Chief Minister stated that the city government will definitely consider all suggestions received from the concerned departments and agencies.


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