BENGALURU: The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has started cracking down on those selling plastic carry bags, boxes, covers, packaging materials and other items.
On Monday, a BBMP team led by Mayor Gangambike Mallikarjun, raided various places in the city, seizing plastic items and creating awareness among shopkeepers and customers on the plastic ban.
They also slapped notices and cancelled the trade licences of some commercial establishments.
The teams visited Yeshwanthpur APMC yard, Vijayanagar Market, Rajarajeshwari Nagar and Peenya Industrial Area Market.
Simultaneous raids were conducted by other BBMP teams in other sub-divisions in Jayanagar, Russel Market, KR Market and Shivajinagar.
The teams visited many commercial units and confiscated plastic items including garbage bags, plates, spoons and packaging materials.
Speaking to media persons, at the sidelines of the raid, the Mayor said that it was done to sensitise people about the hazards of plastic and the rules of the plastic ban.
So far no fine has been imposed. However, in the following weeks these fines will be issued to those using plastic.
This is just the first step. In the coming days, packing points and even factories will be checked, Deputy Mayor Bhadre Gowda added. He further said that people have a month’s time to fall in line.
BBMP Special Commissioner (Finance) Randeep R, said that the drive was not just limited to shops, vendors or retail outlets.
He said that they will soon start checking where goods are packaged and then sold to retailers.
“Multilayer plastic packaging is not done in factories where chips and biscuits are packed. That is where checks will need to be done. If they are done by factories, then the process will also be looked into as single-use plastic is prohibited,” he said.
The drives have given the BBMP information on where multi-layer plastic comes from. Officials said they will start checking from these sources.
The shopkeepers and vendors questioned the BBMP as to why no action was being taken against the manufacturers of plastic.
“The government wants revenue and so retailers are soft targets,” said Ramesh, a trader at Yeshwanthpur market.