Mangaluru, Feb 18, 2020 DHNS: A novel initiative of offering a kg of rice in exchange for a kg of plastic waste has been launched in Bantakal, to make the surroundings of Shirva Gram Panchayat free of plastic waste.
Gram Panchayat member K R Patkar, who launched the initiative, offered rice to people in exchange for their trash to tackle the scourge of plastic waste.
Patkar said, ‘’Plastic waste are found dumped on roads, drains and vacant sites. The initiative is an effort to create awareness among the people on the ill effects of indiscriminate dumping of plastic waste. To motivate people not to dump the plastic waste, rice is being offered to the residents.”
Patkar said, “Instead of dumping plastic waste, public can neatly arrange the plastic at home and hand it over to my office at Bantakal in exchange for rice. If people have more than 10 kg of plastic waste at home, then I will only visit their houses to collect the plastic and to hand over the rice.”
“I was motivated by Mulugu District Collector C Narayan Reddy who had started the ‘1 kg rice for 1 kg plastic’ initiative, which encouraged citizens there to collect single-use plastics and exchange it for 1 kilogram of rice.”
He said, “Launched on a pilot basis, I have collected 45 kg of plastic waste from local residents from January 15 to 30 and distributed 45 kg of rice in return. The people also have been supporting the initiative. A donor has come forward and asked me to continue the initiative and has handed over one quintal of rice to me.”
Patkar, who is also the President of Lions Club, said that he would continue the initiative looking at the response and support given by the public.
‘’I am not only collecting plastic but also creating awareness among people on the ill effects of dumping of plastic waste, awareness on environment in our surroundings as well. The rice is distributed in a cloth bag,’’ Patkar added.