After the Pune Municipal authorities decision to introduce a unique and harsh punishment for those who spit in public places, Kolkata is following suit in city hygiene. However, for citizens of Pune who have to shell out Rs 100 if found spitting, the dumping ground rules for Kolkata come with a pricier fine. Citizens may now have to shell out a maximum fine of Rs 1 lakh for littering in public places.
The West Bengal Assembly have passed a Bill to enhance the penalty for offenders through an amendment to section 338 of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (second amendment) Act on Thursday.
This initiative to keep the city clean is said to have come on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s express of concern. The chief minister had attended the Dakshineshwar skywalk for its inauguration when she was taken aback by betel juice stains on the walls of the skywalk.
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Earlier law had stipulated that a fine of Rs 50 and a maximum of Rs 5,000 when found guilty of dumping wastes. However, the new stringent bill passed will impose a minimum fine of Rs 5,000 and a maximum penalty of Rs 1 lakh fine on polluters.
It also came on a day, state Urban Development Municipal Affairs Minister Firhad Hakim was elected the new mayor of Kolkata after the exit of Sovan Chatterjee on the directions of Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee.
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To implement the rules, Banerjee had formed an 11-member committee on Wednesday to check spitting and littering in public places.
Hakim said, he will take up a major awareness drive to keep the city clean.
A senior citizen, who did not wish to be named, said "The city had earlier failed to impose a fine of Rs 50 for littering, I am not sure how effective it will be this