Bengaluru: Once again with the Gowri Ganesha festival only 24 hours away, the banned Plaster of Paris (PoP) Ganesha idols have popped up across the city.
The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) had in 2014 imposed a ban on the sale and manufacture of PoP idols as they are environmentally hazardous as PoP does not easily dissolve in water and the paints used to decorate these idols are highly toxic.
Though the BBMP has served notices to idol makers prohibiting them from selling PoP Ganeshas, they are freely available and the men selling them do so without fear of fines or retribution from the civic authority. In fact, idol makers claim there is little or no demand for environment friendly clay idols and they have a huge leftover stock from last year to clear.
KSPCB Chairman Laxman said however that the board is keen on stepping up enforcement of the ban this year. “Last year we were able to curb sale of PoP idols by 60 per cent, but this year we are hoping to enforce it 100 per cent with the help of civic authorities,” he said....