Chennai, Oct 18 (IANS): The Tamil Nadu environment department has issued orders to all district administration officers to enforce strict measures over the use of polythene covers after reports that recycled plastics are being used at several places.
The environment department has directed the district administrations to conduct surprise checks into shops and establishments to ascertain the volume of polythene covers being sold in the state.
It may be noted that a total of 14 plastic items including one-time use of plastic bags and polythene covers were banned in the state of Tamil Nadu in 2019.
Sajitha Kannan, an environmental activist based in Madurai told IANS, "There is a ban on the use of polythene covers and one-time use of plastic bags in the state. However, we can find the usage of these covers rampant, and vendors are buying these covers from outside the state and using them to distribute materials to customers free of cost. The damage such covers are doing to the environment is insurmountable and we have filed a complaint to the state pollution control board as well as the state environmental department on the same."
The crackdown of polythene covers has started in Salem district, the district administration has carried out searches in several shops and establishments. Sources in the district told IANS that seizures have been made from shops and from small vendors who are using polythene bags in large numbers.
Environmental activist and a member of Salem People's movement, Mohanakumaran told IANS, "The unabated use of these plastic covers choke the drainage system and creates water clogging and we urge the government to impose heavy fine on those who indulge in such things".
The sanitary department in the state has also geared up to prevent the use of polythene covers as well as teacups coated with plastic, straws made of plastic, flags of plastic, earbuds, and such items that are in daily use in the system.
The state environment department has also directed the district administrations to conduct searches with the support of the district health department officials and the police in local areas to prevent the use of polythene and plastic covers.