Clogged waterways and drains Plastics, plastics everywhere

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Commendable move and should be noted.

That is the decision of student body, Democratic Students’ Alliance, Manipur (DESAM) to ban plastics in the State.

Would be more meaningful if other student organisations too back the stand of DESAM and see what they can do to neutralise the negative impact of plastic carry bags, not only to human health but also the environment.

Perhaps this is where the All Naga Students’ Association, Manipur may extend its hand of co-operation and carry out a similar campaign in the districts where its writ runs large.

This is imperative in the face of the announcement that DESAM and ANSAM will jointly take up issues which are of concern to the people and the land and the negative impact of plastics on the environment is of concern to all.

The State Government has already announced a ban on certain types of plastic carry bags, and the decision of DESAM can and should give that needed extra muscle and teeth to the decision of the Government.

Remember the time way back in 2004, when present Chief Minister N Biren was the MoS for Forest and Environment and launched a drive against plastic carry bags in the commercial areas of Imphal.

That move certainly earned the then Congress Government good points, but then like everything associated with the Government, the drive petered out and vanished without a trace.

It was only a few days back that the present BJP led Government also came out with a declaration banning the sale and use of plastic carry bags below certain thickness.

The success or failure of any stand adopted by the Government depends a great deal on the co-operation of the people and with DESAM now joining the fray and announcing a ban on plastics in the State, it will be interesting to see how the people respond to the need to protect the environment.

No doubt plastic carry bags are certainly very convenient. People today do not have to contend with soggy old newspapers to wrap the goods bought from the market.

Imagine wrapping a kilo of dressed chicken or fish in old papers.

That certainly would be very, very inconvenient but today plastic carry bags are there to wrap and carry whatever one buys from the neighbourhood grocery store or from the chicken or fish vendor.

However such a convenience comes with its share of downsides and this can easily be seen in the clogged drainages and khongbans in every locality.

This becomes all that more apparent during rainy days and just take a look at Naga nullah which runs just to the east of Nagamapal.

The Government has done its bit in covering parts of Naga nullah but a closer look will reveal how the free flow of the waste water is being impeded greatly by the plastics which clog the natural water way.

It is also the same thing with Nambul river.

The drains running at the commercial areas of Imphal, that is Thangal Keithel, Paona Keithel, Allu Galli and BT Road too are clogged with plastics which are non-bio-degradable.

Lack of civic sense. This is the primary reason why Imphal is fast nearing the description of plastic capital of the region.

Everyone knows the negative impact of plastics, but no one seems to care as long as it does not clog one’s courtyard.

Now that DESAM has taken a stand, let other student organisations and civil society bodies too see how they can chip in with their bit.

Source: The Sangai Express

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