On Thursday, West Bengal Assembly passed a Bill where the penalty for the spitting and littering in public spaces can be up to Rs.1 lakh. The penalty has been raised through an amendment to section 338 of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (second amendment) Act.
The move came soon after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee found the newly inaugurated Dakshineswar skywalk stained with betel juice and expressed her annoyance.
If found guilty, the citizen will be imposed a minimum fine of Rs.5,000 and a maximum penalty of Rs.1 lakh. While there is an ongoing debate regarding the effectiveness of the bill, the previous law stipulated that the minimum penalty for dumping garbage was Rs.50 and the maximum fine was Rs. 5,000.
This came on a day when on the directions of Chief Minister and TMC chief Mamata Banerjee, state Urban Development Municipal Affairs Minister Firhad Hakim was elected the new mayor of Kolkata, after the exit of Sovan Chatterjee.
To counter spitting and littering in public spaces, CM had formed an 11-member committee on Wednesday. While speaking to PTI, Hakim said, he will take up a major awareness drive to keep the city clean.