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October 17, Amritsar; Eco-Amritsar is delighted with the declaration of Government Medical College (GMC) imposing ban on polythene bags. This could be a healthy precursor for institutions all over the city to convert to cloth bags, each of which saves usage of a 1000 poly bags.
Eco-Amritsar has been approached last week by GMC, and has agreed to find synergies in environmental conservation. Commenting on the proactive approach of GMC, Gunbir Singh, Chairman Eco-Amritsar said, “The medical fraternity is an enlightened citizenry, and we compliment the initiative of Principal GMC, Dr Karnail Singh, and his team. We have already been collaborating with the Indian Medical Association (IMA) to spread the awareness of conservation, and wish to take this program further with the assistance of the fraternity.”
It is interesting to note that the inventor of the first plastic bag had ensured that it was biodegradable. In 1862, Alexander Parkes, made these bags in England using cellulosic, an organic material. It was only about 60 years ago that polythene started getting used for bags wrecking colossal havoc to the environment. This is creating unmanageable mega tons of garbage, clogging spaces and sewers, and killing cows and other animals. The present day plastic bag takes many hundreds of years to degrade and thus is a permanent ecological horror. Read this interesting piece for more information on Tote Bags.
Gunbir Singh explains, “It is imperative that we promote the usage of the cloth bag along with the ban on polybag. We have offered ideas and solutions for citizens, retail and corporate businesses to sponsor, use and promote this healthy substitute aggressively. In fact we have had a meeting with the plastic dealers association in the presence of the Municipal Commissioner, Mr. DPS Kharbanda, urging the dealers to start stocking cloth bags and leaf plates ( patter & donas), instead of polybags and styrofoam plates.”
“The effects of the awareness programs initiated this year are beginning to show. We urge the citizens of Amritsar to wholeheartedly join the movement for a healthy hygienic city” appeals Gunbir.
Government Medical College, Amritsar come into being as a Medical School in Lahore in 1864 . The School continued to work in the capital city of undivided Punjab till its subsequent relocation to the holy city of Amritsar in 1920.