The Corporation of City of Panaji (CCP) is contemplating to ban the sale and use of plastic face masks, popularly known as ‘surgical masks’ or ‘one-time use masks’ or ‘use and throw masks,’ in the city as the discarded plastic face masks choked the drains, thereby causing flooding, revealed the city mayor Uday Madkaikar.
Speaking to this daily, Madkaikar informed that from Monday onwards, inspectors from Corporation of City of Panaji (CCP) would be visiting pharmacy to pharmacy to pass on the word of the corporation to stop selling plastic surgical masks. He said that while cleaning the drains during waterlogging at various spots in the city, many CCP workers found these surgical face masks thrown either on the roads or in the drains by the users which are non-degradable in nature.
He appealed to the owners of pharmacies and members of general public in the city not to sell and use the surgical masks, and added that “there is no harm in using cloth face masks, but do not use surgical face masks” as the discarded surgical face masks that were thrown on roads were found choking the drains. Make use of cloth masks as they are good, durable, degradable, can easily be washed and reused, he added.
He said that plastic bags were banned by the corporation some two years ago, and CCP started imposing heavy fines on the violators of ban as many drains were found choked with the plastic bags during the monsoon and created problem for the corporation and city dwellers. “From Monday onwards, the corporation would start acting tough against the violators of plastic ban order and initiate strict action against them,” he added.
Stating that those pharmacies dealing in such face masks should exhaust the stocks, he said that “if found selling the particular face masks in violation of the CCP order, the sellers would face penalty in the form of fine, accordingly, based on the stocks.”