Bengaluru

No need to wear mask if driving car alone with windows rolled up: BBMP

In what comes as a respite for many, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, on Monday, issued an order clarifying that a person driving a four-wheeler alone with windows closed need not wear a mask.

However, a person riding a two-wheeler, without a pillion rider, has to wear a mask, BBMP Commissioner N. Manjunath Prasad said in the order.

The decision was taken at a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) meeting on November 1 and communicated to the BBMP.

The order comes days after the BBMP had reiterated the TAC’s guidelines, issued in August, that had mandated a person driving a four-wheeler alone with windows closed should compulsorily wear a mask.

Following public outcry, Mr. Manjunath Prasad had written to the Additional Chief Secretary (Health and Family Welfare) seeking a clarification on the issue. The Health Department then referred the matter to the State’s COVID-19 TAC.

The clarification comes at a time when citizens were being fined ₹250 for not wearing a mask even while driving a four-wheeler alone.

Commuters have welcomed the move. “There was lot of confusion not only among the public but also among officials. It used to lead to unnecessary arguments on the road,” a regular commuter said.

Two-wheeler riders have also demanded an exemption from wearing the mask while wearing the full-face helmet. Meera C.K., a regular commuter, said it was suffocating.

“Half the time, my attention is on fixing the mask under the helmet rather than on the road. Also, what is the logic in exempting a person driving a car alone from wearing a mask while insisting that a person riding a two-wheeler alone, that too with a full-face helmet, has to wear one,” she asked.

The order does not mention whether people should wear a mask while riding a bicycle.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2021 9:41:08 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/no-need-to-wear-mask-if-driving-car-alone-with-windows-rolled-up-bbmp/article33005799.ece

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