Polythene in Kashmir
Years have passed, but polythene is coming to Kashmir Valley despite ban and other assurances by authorities that they will save the environment here. Polythene bags are being used for all purposes in Kashmir Valley and largely people are responsible for its promotion as unlike Ladakh, they have not refused to use polythene bags for daily use.
Few years back Jammu and Kashmir High Court imposed ban on the polythene bags in Kashmir Valley, on a PIL to save “fragile eco-system”. Government announced ban on the Court order, but even today dozens of truck loads of polythene bags come to Kashmir and they are available freely in the market. The reason behind such violation of ban is the nexus between the strong polythene lobby manufacturers of Jammu and some people in administration. Governor Satya Pal Malik has said that he will not tolerate such elements in his administration, but it seems that either he is not informed about this matter or he is not inclined to intervene to save Kashmir Valley from the menace of polythene.
There are dozens of polythene manufacturing units in Jammu region and there material has only one place of supply that is Kashmir Valley. Despite Court orders these industrialists have been able to send truck loads of polythene to Kashmir Valley, without any seizing of such truck loads at any check point while they travel from Jammu to Srinagar. The Government was in thick implementing the ban and asked people and civil society to help in it so that they do not use the polythene bags anymore in Kashmir Valley. However it needs a decision at the top to stop the truck loads of polythene from entering into Kashmir Valley. Many reports have suggested that even the polythene truck loads are coming from other parts also apart from the Jammu industrialists. It needs an intervention from Raj Bhawan to stop the entry of trucks loaded with polythene bags into the Kashmir Valley. People of Kashmir are waiting for Raj Bhawan to take a call on such a sensitive matter connected with the environment of this Valley.