Drive begins tomorrow: One-year jail for violating jute packaging law

DHAKA - State Minister for Textiles and Jute Mirza Azam today said the violators of the 'Mandatory Jute Packaging Act 2010' would get one-year jail or Taka 50,000 penalty or both.

"According to Article 14 of the Act, if anyone uses other wrappings instead of jute for packaging commodities (mentioned in the law), he or she would be sentenced with one-year jail or fined Taka 50,000 or given both penalties," he said, addressing a press conference at the textiles and jute ministry's conference room in the city.

As per Article 15 of the Act, the accused will be awarded double penalty for committing the same offense for the second time, he added.

Textiles and Jute Ministry Additional Secretary Krishna Bhattacharya and Jute Department Director General Mosleh Uddin were present at the press conference, among others.

The government will begin a weeklong special drive from tomorrow to ensure the mandatory use of jute bags for packaging, the state minister said, adding that such kind of a special drives conducted between November 31, 2015 and February 2016 to execute the 'Mandatory Jute Packaging Act 2010' were successful.

He also said as per the decision of a inter-ministerial meeting held at Textiles and Jute Ministry conference room, the government will conduct the drives on roads, waterways, land ports, goods-carrying vehicles and producing, packaging and export-import organisations to implement the Act 2010.

Mirza Azam said his ministry has already held several meetings with different ministries, institutions, stakeholders, rice mill owners' associations, police personnel and administrations to make the drive a success.

The government has taken various measurers including sending SMS, broadcasting and publishing news, distributing leaflets and posters on importance of using jute package, he added.

The state minister said the district and upazila administrations were asked to take necessary measures to implement the decision on the drive and inform the ministry and cabinet division about updates in this regard.

Mirza Azam hoped that the environment will get free from pollution and demand of jute products will increase, if the act is implemented properly.

Mandatory Jute Packaging Act 2010 has compelled ensuring the use of jute bags for packaging of 17 commodities, including paddy, rice, wheat, maize, fertilisers, sugar, onion, ginger, garlic, pulses, potato, flour, chili, turmeric, coriander seeds and husks of rice and wheat.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)