Bara Bazar declared no-plastic zone
SHILLONG: The Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) has declared Iewduh (Bara Bazar) as no-plastic zone with immediate effect making way for the use of sla (leaves for wrapping eatables), organic and paper bags.
The decision was taken at a meeting convened by the executive member (EM) in charge of Trade, Paul Lyngdoh, and EM in charge of Market, Jambor War, and attended by the office bearers of Syiem of Hima Mylliem, Paiem Ainam Manik Syiem and his team of Myntris on Tuesday.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Lyngdoh said, “We have discussed and resolved to immediately declare Iewduh as a no-plastic zone. Along with the declaration, some important decisions were taken such as encouraging alternative to plastics like leaves (sla) which were used extensively earlier but their popularity is now on the wane.”
He said there are companies that manufacture bags which do not involve the use of plastics such as organic and paper bags. He also pointed out that the livelihood of people who cultivate the leaves will also get a much-needed boost.
As part of the move, the office of Hima Mylliem and the KHADC in the coming days will identify prominent locations in Iewduh to put up signboards indicating it is a no-plastic zone.
He also said that awareness programmes will be held in collaboration with KHADC and the state government.
By way of yet another measure to protect Iewduh from garbage and filth, the KHADC and the office of the Syiem of Hima Mylliem have decided to introduce cold storage facility for perishable items such as vegetables, meat and fish.
“For this initiative, we have decided to set up a committee — comprising KHADC members, secretary of Council and Myntris — which will identify a plot of land in or in the vicinity of Iewduh to set up the cold storage,” Lyngdoh said.
According to him, the idea of cold storage came about to ensure that health of the people will not be compromised and items used will be fit for human consumption.
“This step will be notified immediately so that the committee can take up the matter with the state government particularly identification of land,” he said.
The move of the KHADC comes in the wake of attempts to regain the lost glory of Iewduh, the traditional market place of the Khasis and the Jaintias which is looked upon as the “rice place of the people”.
As for the success of such a step, Lyngdoh said collaboration of stakeholders is important.
It may be mentioned that in September 2017 the office of the Syiem of Hima Mylliem organised a cleanliness awareness programme at Students Field in which the shopkeepers were enlightened on the use and sale of plastics which are less than 50 microns.
However, piles of garbage, including bio-degradable and non-biodegradable items, are thrown indiscriminately on certain pathways in Iewduh making it an eyesore.