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PTI

Get a discount of Re 1 on a litre of petrol and 50 paise off on a litre of diesel. In return, dispose empty milk pouches and plastic water bottles at a petrol pump in Rajasthan's Bhilwara.

This is how Ashok Kumar Mundra, owner of Chhaganlal Bagtawarmal petrol pump located on Chittor Road, is encouraging people to shun single use plastics (SUPs).

He launched the three-month awareness campaign on July 15 and has found support from Saras Dairy, a dairy brand in the state, Bhilwara district administration and the pollution control board.

Saras Dairy has committed to disposing of the empty pouches collected at the petrol pump.

"The petrol pump owner came with a proposal to create awareness against SUPs. He offered rebates on empty milk pouches of Saras Dairy and water bottles. The campaign has started," Bhilwara Collector Ashish Modi said.

Mundra said nearly 700 milk pouches have been collected.

"I am giving a rebate of Re 1 per litre on petrol and 50 paise per litre on diesel if someone brings a milk pouch of one litre or two pouches of half a litre or a one litre water bottle. These pouches are collected at the petrol pump and will be given to Saras Dairy for disposal," Mundra told PTI.

"I initiated this campaign to create awareness against the use of plastics and polythene. I wish to see Bhilwara as a polythene- and plastic-free city because it not only harms the environment but also poses a threat to stray animals, particularly cows," he said.

Mundra said his expectations have not been met as he anticipated at least 10,000 pouches in a month.

"The number is quite low. Because of the monsoon season, the number of customers at the petrol pump is low. I am now planning to extend the campaign to six months," he said.

At present, the pouches and bottles are being collected at Mundra's petrol pump and dumped at a nearby place owned by him. These are later handed over to the dairy.

Mundra said he will ask Saras Dairy to start collecting empty pouches at its booths across the city and, in lieu of that, people will be given coupons which could be redeemed at the fuel pump within six months.

"This will be more useful for people," he said.

Vipin Sharma, MD of Bhilwara Dairy, a unit of Saras Dairy, said the scope of the campaign could be extended if Mundra proposes.
 

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