Wearing masks inside private vehicles is no longer mandatory in Mumbai. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) took back its earlier directives and ordered clean-up marshals to stop fining people who are not wearing masks inside their private vehicles. The ones travelling through public transport, however, have to continue wearing masks, else will be penalised. The new rule came into force from Sunday.
BMC made wearing masks must since April 8 as Covid-19 cases started increasing in the metro. BMC also made violators of its guidelines perform community services like sweeping roads in case they refused to pay fine. The authoritative body has been penalising 42 people per day taking the total count till November to 4.86 lakh people. The team collected Rs10, 07 Lakh crore by imposing fine alone for not wearing masks at a public place.
In September, the BMC also reduced the fine for not wearing a mask from the initial Rs 1,000 to Rs 200.
Meanwhile, other states like Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Kerala continue to impose fines for not wearing masks both in private vehicles and public transport. People not wearing masks in public areas in Gurgaon can be fined up to Rs 2500. In Punjab, the fine for not wearing a mask in a public place in the state is presently Rs 500, revised from Rs 200 in the last week of May.
In Uttar Pradesh, the fine amount is Rs 500 which was raised from Rs 100 in July 2020. In Kerala, authorities initially imposed a hefty fine of Rs 10, 000 that was later taken down to Rs 500. Citizens from Chennai who don not wear masks will have to pay Rs 200.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has informed the Delhi High Court that there is no mandate directing people to wear a mask while travelling alone after a petition was filed by Advocate Saurabh Sharma challenging the Rs 500 challan issued to him for not wearing a mask while he was driving alone in his private car.
India’s Covid-19 tally of cases climbed to 1,05,57,985 with 15,144 new cases recorded on Saturday. The national recovery rate to 96.58 per cent, according to the Union Health Ministry data. The government started with its first phase vaccination drive inoculating nearly 2 lakh frontline healthcare workers on Saturday.