Indian Railways to prohibit single-use plastic from October 2

In a move to curb use of plastics, Union Ministry of Railways has directed all regional offices to ensure complete removal of single-use plastics from all railways stations effective from 2 October 2019. The move is an effort by Indian Railways to shield the environment from menace of plastic.

Key Highlights

Indian Railways has directed all Railway units to enforce ban on single use plastic material, with less than 50 micron thickness, except where the thickness of such plastic sheets impair functionality of product.

Emphasis is on making necessary arrangements to minimize generation of plastic waste, its eco- friendly disposal and to follow Plastic Waste Management rules.

Railway Ministry has also instructed its Railway units to administer a pledge on 2nd October 2019 to cut use of plastics and to adapt measures such as Information, Education & Communication (IEC) to create awareness among railway users.

Circular issued by Ministry of Railways in this regard states following instructions-

  • Ban on single use plastic material
  • Railways will work with vendors at all railway platforms to encourage all railway vendors to avoid use of plastic carry bags
  • Railway employees should reduce, reuse and refuse plastic products and should use inexpensive reusable bags to reduce plastic footprint
  • IRCTC (Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation) to implement return of plastic drinking water bottles as part of Extended Producer Responsibility– a strategy to add all of environmental costs associated with a product throughout product life cycle to market price of that product and Plastic Bottle crushing machines to be provided expeditiously for this purpose. In 1st phase 1,853 plastic water bottle crushing machines will be installed at 360 major stations.
  • Ban will be strictly enforced on railway stations from 2nd October 2019 and other properties across country as part of ‘Plastic Free Railway


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