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Plastic trash piling up amid COVID, Telangana govt says use paper slips at ATM, shops

Posted June 2nd, 2020, 10:07 AM IST

Plastic trash piling up amid COVID, Telangana govt says use paper slips at ATM, shops

In order to minimise the use of non biodegradable waste, the state government has decided to replace plastic hand gloves with paper slips. Paper slips, wrapped around a finger, are to be used in ATMs, while making point of sale (PoS) transactions, and using touch screens in offices and commercial outlets.

The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) has already worked on a few modalities and sent them to the municipal administration and urban development (MA&UD) department for implementation in all urban local bodies across the state.

Highly placed sources in MA&UD told Deccan Chronicle that the Union home affairs ministry has given guidelines to minimise the use of non biodegradable waste. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, biomedical waste, especially hand gloves mostly made of plastic, is adding to waste piles. In a little over two months, non biodegradable waste has multiplied several times, with the civic corporation collecting over 1,000 metric tonnes daily.

“Taking a cue from the Centre’s guidelines, the state government has decided to make it mandatory to have paper slips at all shopping malls, super markets, offices, ATMs and other places as a precautionary measure,” a top source in MA&UD said.

Though customers are familiar with contact-less transactions, in ATMs and other places the user has to type the PIN on the PoS machine. “So if a paper slip is placed at the billing counter, it would not only be hygienic but also environment friendly,” the source added.

The source said that the department has been in contact with manufacturing units and asked them to make biodegradable hand gloves, which could be cheaper compared to conventional hand gloves.

“Paper gloves could also be used in offices and homes to operate mobile phones, tabloids and touch screens.”

Sources said that the government will release detailed guidelines for the use of paper slips and their collecting mechanism prior to June 7.

“Once shopping malls, religious places, function halls and other major public gathering places are open, paper slips or hand gloves will be extremely useful,” the source added.