Curbs on promotional brochures, flyers on cards?

Muscat, Oct 3 – The Muscat Municipal Council discussed recently a proposal to stop the granting of permission for distributing brochures/ flyers in buildings, including residential apartments. The municipal law prohibits advertisements of any kind in public places, including mosques, historical structures, gardens, walls and private buildings. Hundreds of leaflets, mostly promoting discount sales, are distributed every day all over the city, including public places, parking spaces, residential apartments.
“Flyers should be banned or regulated as they are dumped everywhere. I find five leaflets of the same product and company at my doorstep sometimes,” says Priya Madhav, who lives near a hypermarket.
“They are dumped at one place or at wrong places. You will find them even near hospitals, schools or on your windscreens,” said an entrepreneur who organises manpower and logistics for businesses.
“Though permissions are sought from authorities such as Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the municipality, there is no check on how these flyers are distributed,” he said.
R Chavan, a landscaping manager in a private company, said it was high time such paper ads are done away with in the era of digital and social media advertisements.
“We find people dumping flyers in isolated areas because fixing accountability at the individual level is just not possible,” he added.
According to sources in the environment sector, paper waste dumped across the city is disturbing, though it may not raise the same level of health concerns.

Vinod Nair