NGT bans plastic items in towns located along banks of Ganga

The National Green Tribunal on Friday put a ban on the use, sale, purchase and storage of plastic bags and plastic items along river Ganga such as in Haridwar and Rishikesh, reported PTI. The green tribunal said the ban on plastic products will be put at Haridwar’s Har Ki Pauri, Rishikesh and upper areas in Uttarkashi. It also said that any violations would invite a fine of Rs 5,000.

A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar also banned the sale, manufacture and storage of such items till Uttarkashi. The NGT passed the direction after noting that despite its earlier order, plastic was being used in these areas causing pollution to the river.

Back in September, the environment protection body had asked a committee that had been set up to monitor the execution of its directions on cleaning of the river, to submit a report on the progress that had been made towards rejuvenating the river. The green panel had set up the supervisory committee in July 2017 to oversee proper and effective implementation of all the projects related to cleaning of Ganga. It had also asked the committee to submit the implementation-cum-progress report to the tribunal every three months.
It had also put a ban on the construction activities within 100 metres of the river edge and had said that the government spent over Rs 7,000 crore in the past two years to cleanse the river. In a detailed judgment, the tribunal had also prohibited dumping of waste within 500 metres from the river, ordering that offenders would be liable to pay a penalty of Rs 50,000 per default.

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