Sikkim became India’s first fully organic state after winning the top UN award in 2018. Two years later, Lachen, a small town in the state is taking a milestone step by introducing bamboo water bottles to reduce the use of plastic water bottles. Lachen expects to also keep the littering in check by introducing this measure. By Kumar Shree

Thanks to the gorgeous snow-capped peaks and stunning panoramic views, Lachen attracts thousands of visitors every year. These visitors bring plastic water bottles with them, which are often dumped at the beautiful destination. This phenomenon has raised two major problems for the quaint town—increasing plastic trash and unwanted littering. Lachen loves its cleanliness and has come up with a way of keeping it intact—bamboo water bottles. The local community has also introduced a complete ban on plastic bottles.

MP Hishey Lachungpa has ordered these bamboo water bottles from the neighbouring state of Assam. Sikkim took its first steps towards banning plastic water bottles in 1998 itself. It took another revolutionary step in 2016 by putting a ban on the use of packaged drinking water in government offices. The ban was also carried forward to government events. To ensure a proper implementation of the newly-introduced ban, the inbound vehicles are checked at random to make sure no one carries plastic bottles to Lachen.

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On the brink of this era of necessity to control pollution in our hills,we #theBaasGhaari have come up with these bamboo bottles which wi not only control pollution but also will keep us healthy..We all know during the season time lakhs of tourists flock into our hills without carrying a water bottle and they end up buying plastic bottles which they never take it along with them while returning from vacations hence leaving a huge amount of these plastic bottles all around not only littering our beautiful hill but also these bottle impacts our environment in a negative way and in order to avoid such we have come up with these bottles which is environment friendly and also healthy..What we believe is that if a single tourist or a normal local person gets one of these bottles and uses it for atleast 10times than we are avoiding "10 PLASTIC BOTTLES"..If we consume the water stored in these bottles it will keep our abdomen helathy and as we all know 70% of desease it starts from our stomach.. We hope you all will definitely love our initiative and be a part of this wonderful journey 🙏 So here it is Guys go and grab yours 😃 #teamBaasGhaari 🙏 #bamboo #bamboowaterbottles #gogreengoecofriendly #GOLOCALSUPPORTLOCAL #REDUCEREUSERECYCLE♻️

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To begin with, the local authorities are getting 1,000 bamboo water bottles. While that seems like a humble number, we know that it takes a small step to drive a big change. We are hopeful that people will opt for these bamboo water bottles and the number will soon rise. Talking about the littering part of it, the locals are also dealing with wafer and biscuit wrapper trash. What Lachen and the entire state of Sikkim is doing should be seen as a huge motivation and we must pledge to practice and promote responsible tourism.

Related: Sikkim Becomes World’s First Fully Organic State, Wins Top UN Award