NEW DELHI: Food and Consumer Affairs Ministry has decided to ban single-use plastic in its various departments as well as the public sector units under its administration from September 15.
The decision was taken at a meeting held by Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan.
Paswan announced "a blanket ban on all types of single-use plastic products" in the ministry as well as PSUs, including Food Corporation of India (FCI) from September 15.
The decision on this was taken in a high-level meeting with secretaries of both the departments i.e. Consumer Affairs and Food, CMD of Food Corporation of India, DG Bureau of India Standards, MD of CWC, Director Legal Metrology along with other senior officials of the ministry.
Paswan asked the officials to make alternate arrangements to ensure that the ban is effective, an official statement said.
Moreover, the department said, it distributed cloth bags to employees to reduce the consumption of single-use plastics.
"Department of Fertilizers is committed to do its utmost efforts to reduce the consumption of single-use plastics. As these are non-biodegradable they pollute our environment," it said.
An effective ban on single-use plastic can happen if an alternative is available in the market.
Cloth or jute bags, locally tailored and produced, can be a viable alternative, an official statement said.
"Looking into such opportunities, Department of Fertilizers, during the Swachhata Pakhwada and Swachhata Hi Sewa campaign decided to distribute cloth bags produced by Women's Self-help Group Laxmi Devi Swasya Group of village Maragondanahalli Grama Panchayat Ramohalli district, Karnataka to its employees," the statement said.
The department termed it as a small step to reduce single-use plastic usage and, to make people aware of a viable alternative, while at the same time to improve the income and livelihood of rural women of India.