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State coastline to be 'plastic and garbage-free'

State coastline to be plastic and garbage-free

Thiruvananthapuram: The sprawling and picturesque coastline of Kerala will soon become a "plastic and garbage-free" zone with the state government drawing up a comprehensive action plan to make the coastal areas clean and beautiful.

Addressing a press meet here, Fisheries Minister J Mercykutty Amma said steps would be taken to remove plastic and other garbage piled across the 590 km-long state coastline by the end of this month.

The project would be implemented by the Department of Fisheries with the support of various agencies, including urban local bodies, Clean Kerala Company, Suchitwa Mission, Kudumbashree and other NGOs, she said.

"Our state has a picturesque coastline. But garbage, especially plastic and solid waste dumped on the shores hamper its beauty. So we decided to make our coasts garbage and plastic free through a time-bound action plan," the minister told reporters.

As part of the programme, plastic and solid waste would be collected separately from coastal and inland areas and handed over to the Clean Kerala Company, under the state Local Self Government Department (LSGD).

"The company plans to crush the plastic waste and mix it along with bitumen and use it for road tarring," she said.

Mercykutty Amma said that steps would also be taken to treat sewage before discharge into the sea and other water courses in urban areas.

She also said the government unveiled a long-term programme to ensure house and toilet facilities for all in the coastal areas.

"The officials were asked to prepare a list of those who have no houses and other basic amenities in our coastal areas within the next three months," the minister added.

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