BENGALURU: Despite a ban on manufacture and sale of Plaster of Paris (PoP) idols, the state government and officials of the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) have still not been able to ensure a strict implementation till date.
According to citizens, conservationists and some KSPCB officials, the failure is because of the continuous soft stand of the government. “The government has been unable to crack the whip on the manufacturers and sellers, not just in Bengaluru, but other districts as well. Despite directions, idols continue to come from other states,” said a KSPCB official, on conditions of anonymity.
Recently, Forest and Environment Minister Anand Singh said that they will hold a meeting with stakeholders and tell them about the disadvantages of PoP. He had also said that a complete ban is not possible this year, as it will affect livelihoods of manufacturers, and will try in 2022. This has not gone down well with citizens and environmentalists.
Some said that the government is constantly playing both sides. “On one hand, the government is asking us make turmeric Ganesha idols. The minister also made a statement that immersion for PoP idols will not be allowed in kalyanis and mobile tanks. On the other hand, they are not stopping the sale of such idols,” Lokesh M, a citizen said.
A senior KPSCB official said that little work is happening due to shortage of staff.
1L turmeric Ganeshas Environment Minister Anand Singh and KSPCB officials launched the one lakh turmeric Ganesha campaign. “Turmeric has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory properties,” KSPCB Member Secretary Srinivasalu said.