Modern age is the age of science and technology. Each day we do come across a new invention or discovery. With the advancement in science and technology the life of modern man has become very comfortable. Manual work has been replaced by mechanical one. Gone are the days when man used to toil hard in accomplishment of his manual labor. Now a modern man can accomplish his work in a brief spell of time with the aid of machinery. No doubt science brought miracles in our lives. We must be grateful of the blessings of science. It produced tens of thousands of useful things for our betterment and comfortable living. Had these things not been produced we would have been living in the Paleolithic age where man lived under the mercy of nature. No doubt man has conquered the power of nature to a great extent.
Among the useful things produced by the science, polythene is the one. It has many uses. But its indiscriminate use has many demerits than merits. One among the properties of polythene is that it is non-biodegradable in nature. Due to this property it has become very harmful for the environment.
In our valley, Kashmir, polythene has wreaked havoc to our environment. Every day tons of polythene material is being flooded into our valley which is dangerous for our fragile environment. Our environment has been disturbed to a great extent due to menace of polythene. Our water bodies have been suffocated due to its indiscriminate use. It has made the soil infertile. Whenever polythene gets buried under the layer of soil it remains intact for several thousand years (proved scientifically) hence makes it impotent. Polythene is very fatal for the micro organisms living in the soil. Moreover the macro-organisms are also being harmed due to misuse of polythene. On numerous occasions we do witness the pet animals devour polythene bags containing leftover food which brings lot of miseries to them. This engulfed polythene gets accumulated in their guts hence produces many diseases among them. That is why on many occasions we do come across the news of operating upon animals for the removal of polythene inside their guts.
We have a trend here in the valley that whenever we go to market in order to buy essential commodities we do not like to carry a cloth bag from home, instead we bring our commodities in polythene bags from the sellers. After their use we throw these bags, on roads or in water bodies. Subsequently our drains get choked while as the aquatic life in our water bodies gets killed. The bigger aquatic animals do consume the polythene material which proves a silent killer for them. Besides this whenever we go for an outing we do take food stuff in polythene bags and after consumption we throw these polythene bags here and there hence pollute our picturesque sites.
It is high time that we must totally shun the use of polythene bags. Many states are polythene free, like Sikkim. The inhabitants of the valley must take a cue from the people of ladakh where polythene has been completely banned. The people of valley need to be persuaded regarding the use of polythene. The chapters regarding the demerits of polythene must be inducted in school text books. Moreover the concerned agencies must take stringent actions against the illegal business of polythene in the valley so that this menace could be eradicated.