Vol. 5 Num 400 Tue. July 12, 2005  
Front Page

Team detects illegal polythene bag factories

The high-powered taskforce of the Ministry of Environment and Forest, and top officials of the National Board of Revenue (NBR) jointly raided a number of industries at Tejgaon in the capital yesterday, and found six of them producing banned polythene shopping bags that cause environmental degradation.

The six industries have bond licence for production of export-oriented items but they produce banned polythene bags, and one of them supplies such bags to hotels in Dhaka, official sources said.

One of the six industries was found operating without environmental clearance from the Department of Environment (DoE).

State Minister for Environment Jafrul Islam Chowdhury and NBR Chairman Khairuzzaman Chowdhury were present during the raids.

The NBR chairman instantly ordered filing cases against the industries for misusing the bond licence. Besides, several cases relating to VAT and taxes were lodged on the spot.

The DoE lodged cases against the industries for producing banned polythene items and for destroying environment. Police also filed cases against them for illegal activities.

The environment ministry is now carrying out a drive to enforce the ban on production of polythene bags. Its taskforce recently detected several industries in Old Dhaka with huge quantities of finished polythene items and raw materials.

Environment Minister Tariqul Islam said the taskforce comprising magistrate, DoE officials, paramilitary BDR and police is regularly raiding industries in different parts of the capital, and has sealed several of them for operating illegally.

Steps have also been taken to enhance production of alternatives to polythene bags, he mentioned.