Local bodies to crack down on single-use plastic bags

Thiruvananthapuram: Local bodies have started cracking down on the banned single-use plastic carry bags along with its pre-monsoon cleaning drive.

Though banned in January 2020, plastic carry bags are still being used by several commercial establishments. The health wing of local bodies has been asking the establishments to avoid the use of single-use plastic bags for the past one month.

The drive is based on a Local Self-government Department circular issued in February, instructing local bodies to initiate steps to ban flex boards and plastic carry bags. Those still using plastic bags in violation of the norms will be slapped with a penalty of Rs 10,000 to Rs 50,000.

Additionally, the upcoming nationwide ban on single-use plastic from July, too, has prompted the Local Self-Government Department to take up the drive.

The central government banned plastic carry bags below 75 microns and those under 60 GSM (gram per square metre) last October.

Kerala did not strictly impose the ban in the light of the Covid-19 situation and the crisis businesses had been undergoing. Suchitwa Mission officials, however, said licences were not being issued to manufacture such plastic materials from 2020.

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