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Return Old Cellphone, Get A Reward: You May Be Entitled To This Soon

New Delhi:  Got an old printer you no longer use? Or a cellphone? The government wants to ensure you can give it back, possibly for some sort of reward (cash back or a discount on future purchases), and without having to go too much out of your way.

The Environment Ministry has released stricter new rules today to control the mountains of electronic waste that pile up in the country. A "reverse chain" has to be created by manufacturers to ensure electronic products are recovered for safe recycling.

India ranks fifth in the world in dumping e-waste, and its contribution is increasing at an average of 5 per cent every year. The US and China are No 1 and 2 respectively.

"We are working at providing some sort of incentive to encourage consumers to also help recycle e waste," said Environment Minister Prakash Javdekar.

He pointed out that Indians currently own 100 crore or xx billion mobile phones -even if jut 25% of those are discarded every year, the minister said, that's a huge reservoir of material of recyclable material.

Experts warn that  discarded products like CFL bulbs and old TV sets contain harmful chemicals; if not properly treated,  they can pollute rivers and the  soil "before making it back to us through the food chain" said a senior ministry official.

The bulk of india's considerable e-waste is processed by rag pickers who often burn  products made of highly toxic plastic to retrieve the small quantities of precious metals including gold and silver found in the circuit boards of some electronic devices.  To check this, the government will authorize recycling plants to specially handle e-waste.

The stricter rules mean that for the first  time,  even CFL energy-efficient bulbs ,which contain mercury, will  have to be recycled. Producers will have to provide details of how and where consumers can submit  used bulbs.

The government is going to work out incentives for consumers which can include cash back while also planning penalties on manufacturers of electronic products who haven't set up  recycling facilities or tied up with an authorised recycler.

Story First Published by NDTV :March 23, 2016 16:02 IST
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You can sell your used devices on www.bigbuyback.in

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