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Kozhikode declared free of plastic waste

Staff Reporter

Siddiqui says it is only the first step of a long journey, urges people to take the project forward

Kozhikode: In the presence of thousands of people on the Kozhikode beach, M.S.A. Siddiqui, Chairman of the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions, declared the district plastic-waste-free on Sunday.

An array of socio-political and cultural leaders attended the function, the culmination of the four-month Mass Action for Plastic-waste-free Kozhikode (MAP) under the initiative of the district administration.

Making the declaration, Mr. Siddiqui said it was a historic step forward for a historic city for a better tomorrow. He, however, reminded that it was only the first phase of a long journey.

“People should take it forward effectively,” he said.

District Collector P.B. Salim, the main architect of the campaign, said he was elated by the inspiring response from a cross-section of society to the project. Urging the people to shoulder collectively the responsibility of taking the message of MAP forward, Dr. Salim said that with the declaration, only the first phase of the project was complete. “We need to take ahead this great journey to create a better and safer earth for our future generations,” he said.

Around Rs.50 lakh is being spent on the project being implemented in different phases, he added. Presiding over the function, A. Pradeepkumar, MLA, said the district was setting an example for others to emulate. “Those who are still to join this mass movement to eradicate one of the major threats to our future should come forward to be part of it actively,” he said.

M.K. Raghavan, MP, unveiled a set of alternative products to plastic carry-bags at the venue. More than 50,000 such carry-bags were distributed free to people at the venue. The district had been witnessing a series of programmes towards achieving the goal of being plastic-waste-free since last October 2. These included rallies, publicity meetings, awareness camps and a human chain.

Milestone

“When the project passes a milestone on the momentous day of Gandhiji's martyrdom, we need to ensure that we effectively follow up this beginning we have made,” Mr. Raghavan said.

A variety of programmes, including an exhibition of photographs on the theme of plastic waste, screening of films and documentaries, display of alternative products to plastic articles and an exhibition of plastic-shredding units, were held on the beach.

A cultural programme followed the declaration ceremony. Kalabhavan Mani, film star, could not make it to the function, though he was scheduled to lead a music programme.

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