Published: February 6, 2024, 10:13 PM
Environment, Forest, and Climate Change Minister Saber Hossain Chowdhury said that from January 2019 to December 2023, the Environment Ministry conducted 2,516 raids for the crime of production and use of banned polythene and collected fines of Tk617 million in 4,207 cases.
The minister said this in Parliament while replying to a query of the ruling Awami League MP elected from Laxmipur, Nur Uddin Chowdhury on Tuesday.
He also said that 170 people have been imprisoned for various periods since 1971. 37 tons of polythene, seeds, and raw materials have been seized.
Some 16 regular cases have also been filed in these connections.
In response to a written question from Noor Uddin Chowdhury, the Environment Minister said that considering the harmful aspects of polythene, the government has already imposed restrictions on the production and marketing of polythene, which is harmful to the environment.
He mentioned that to stop the use of polythene, production, marketing, and use of polythene of various thicknesses are prohibited by law.
Highlighting the various steps taken by the ministry, the minister said that a mobile court is being conducted regularly with the executive magistrate of the Department of Environment and the executive magistrate of the district administration to stop the banned polythene shopping bags.
Since July 2010, under the enforcement program of the Department of Environment, banned polythene manufacturing factories have been evicted, and compensation is being collected from the owner, he said.
Some 170 people have been sentenced to various terms of imprisonment since 1971. 37 metric tons of polythene, grains, and raw materials have been seized.
Apart from this, he said, 16 regular cases have been filed. Various initiatives have been taken to increase public awareness.
Saber Hossain Chowdhury said that in the current government`s election manifesto, the use of environmentally friendly decomposable plastic instead of plastic products has been included to control the adverse effects of plastic products on the environment.
The government has already formulated the “Solid Waste Management Rules, 2021,” the minister said.
He said that the 5R (refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle, and recover) policy has been taken as a basic principle in the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2021.
Following the High Court`s order to stop the use of single-use plastic, the Ministry of Environment, Forestry, and Climate Change has identified 40 upazilas in 12 districts of the coastal region as coastal areas and formulated a 3-year action plan to stop the use of single-use plastic in that area.