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Coronavirus | Mumbai civic body to distribute free masks to offenders fined for not wearing one in public spaces

Ensuring compliance: After paying the fine, the offenders often walk away without wearing a mask.   | Photo Credit: K_Pichumani

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to distribute masks for free to Mumbaikars who don’t wear them in public spaces and are fined for this.

According to civic officials, BMC squads charge ₹200 as fine from those who do not wear a mask in public places or are wearing it improperly. “However it has been observed that after paying the fine, the individuals concerned walk away without wearing the mask. It does not help the cause as the civic body’s priority is not only to slap fine but also to ensure that all citizens wear a mask while in public places to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus,” said a BMC official. He said that the receipt of the fine will mention that the individual concerned has been provided with a free mask.

“As per the health guidelines issued from both the State and the Centre, wearing a mask is important to stop the spread the pandemic until a vaccine is found and distribution starts,” he said.

According to the BMC, directions have been given to strictly adhere to the health norms and fine individuals if found without wearing a mask in public places. As of now, the civic administration has taken action against 4,85,737 individuals across 24 wards in Mumbai. The total fine collected by the BMC so far is ₹10,07,81,600.

BMC Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal had, in a meeting on October 14, directed that action be taken against those not wearing masks. Since then, each administrative ward has formed dedicated squads. At some places, clean-up marshals have also been appointed.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2021 9:59:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/mumbai-civic-body-to-distribute-free-masks-to-offenders-fined-for-not-wearing-one-in-public-spaces/article33207541.ece

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