Religious trust will face action if banned plastic found on premises

MUMBAI: Managements of temples and prayer places in Maharashtra will face legal action if the banned plastic items are found on their premises, the state government said Wednesday, as it moved forward to implement the ban in toto.
State Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam also said the onus of not allowing plastic on their premises falls on the temples, mosques, churches and gurudwaras.
“A trust managing a religious place will have to face legal action if the banned plastic (items) are found inside that religious place or on its premises,” Kadam told PTI.
The state government in March this year announced ban on the manufacture, use, sale, distribution and storage of plastic materials, such as one-time-use bags, spoons, plates, PET and PETE bottles and thermocol items.
The government started enforcing the ban on a variety of plastic items from June 23.
Kadam said some people are still using plastic despite the ban. He said the state government wanted to strengthen its deterrent action.
“There have been several instances where the environment ministry found that plastic bags are being used for carrying flowers and food items. Now, the (religious) trusts will face legal action if the banned plastic material is found in their premises,” he said.
The minister said some trusts in the state have allowed vendors to set up stalls selling food and flowers on their land.
“If the banned plastic material is found with these stalls, the trust concerned will also face the action,” the Shiv Sena leader said.
He said the state government has already collected 300 tonnes of banned plastic since the ban came into force and collected Rs 3 crore in fine from violators.