Mumbai: Sale of liquor in plastic bottles has been banned in Maharashtra with effect from 1 April, 2016, fearing it might harm the health of consumers, the state government has told the Bombay High Court.
A Government Resolution to this effect was issued on 11 January, 2016, a pleader representing the state informed the bench headed by Justice VM Kanade which on Monday heard a public interest litigation seeking a ban on sale of liquor in polyethylene terephthalate bottles or plastic bottles.
Accordingly, the bench disposed of the PIL filed by Global Enviro Solutions, an NGO, saying that nothing survived in the PIL as the government had banned sale of liquor in plastic bottles.
The PIL alleged that plastic material was soluble and migrated into the stored alcohol causing cancer to consumers.
The petition said that no time limit or expiry date was mentioned on the plastic bottles, and added that liquor becomes carcinogenic when stored in plastic bottles.
The petitioner produced reports of National Test House, a government lab, to show that antimony (poisonous chemical) increases when liquor was stored in plastic bottles.
Sanjay Gorwardkar and Sadhna Mahashabde, lawyers for Global Enviro Solutions, said that the Centre needs to consider the reports that the petitioners had produced, which point to the dangers of such plastic packaging for liquor.
Milind Sathe, the senior counsel representing bottle manufacturers, argued that the Union government has constituted an expert committee comprising scientists to examine the effect of liquor or medicine storage in plastic bottles.
He said that the Centre has already notified draft plastic disposal rules which would take care of the activists' concern about improper disposal.
Meanwhile, during the course of hearing of PIL, the petitioner submitted a representation to the state government which issued the GR last month to ban the sale of liquor in plastic bottles.