URGENT need to protect the environment without wasting precious time

Sh Narender Modi,                                                                              No. SKG/PMO/001 01 Jun 2014
Prime Minister of India,
5 Race Course Road,
New Delhi-110003. http://pmindia.nic.in/

We all know that carelessly littered plastic packaging material is doing irreparable loss to environment. This is not only polluting the soil but also choking drains and increasing the dirt level at all places. This indiscreet disposal of plastic has not only become a serious threat to ecology but also at time become cause of embarrassment at tourist places. Despite that such usage continues in most of the states & cities. Even in national capital, empowered by section 5 of Environment Protection Act 1986, notification issued by Delhi Govt. in 2012 has not been implemented because it is facing challenge in High Court. As a result the un-abetted use of plastic carry bags is going on. The precious time is being been passed in court proceedings & environment keeps on getting polluted.

At different times a few other state Governments have also passed orders banning use of plastic bags but the magnitude of problem has risen dramatically. Now as a society we cannot wait when each of the state Govt. will realize its necessity and issue separate orders applicable within state or selected cities. It would take several years before such awareness grab the attention of bureaucracy and notifications are issues. With current high level of environment deterioration by that time we would be several notches below even the current quality of environment. If the notifications issued by different state Govt. have to face the trial in court, there is blurred visibility about the future of such ban.

Like the case of supreme court order banning plastic packaging of tobacco products on pan India basis, there is a need to consolidate all such orders hitherto issued by state Govt. concerning usage of plastic for packaging or carry purposes and be issued by way of Central order.

There is also need of analysis how we can go one step further is limiting the usage of plastic packaging, particularly item which constitutes major part of visible garbage floating on roads & hills i.e. plastic wrappers of chips, biscuits, handy namkeen pouches, ice cream & other street food.

Even without any further research there is ready model of Himachal Pradesh available, needs to be copied and implemented throughout the country whereby no junk food item, edible oil, cookies, wafers, ice-creams, chocolates, candies, pakora, noodle, pizza, sweets etc. are allowed to be packed in a non-biodegradable packing material. Research is required to provide substitute of plastic pouches & bottles meant for one time usage like milk packets, packaged water, soft drink bottles etc.

I would strongly re-iterate that instead of waiting for different state Govt. to come into action and come on same level of enforcement an urgent central regulation is necessary to protect the environment without wasting precious time.

Ministry of Environment may be entrusted with a time bound assignment to complete the task.

Citizen’s reporter
S K Goyal
Dwarka, New Delhi