Mumbai: 1.70 lakh maskless fined in just 2 weeks

Updated: 19 November, 2020 07:31 IST | Prajakta Kasale | Mumbai

BMC says despite the fining, people continue to go without masks

A BMC staffer fines youngsters without masks at Juhu beach. Pic/Atul Kamble
A BMC staffer fines youngsters without masks at Juhu beach. Pic/Atul Kamble

Even as the BMC is gearing up for the second wave of COVID post-Diwali, citizens continue to be careless about social distancing and wearing masks. The number of people fined in the past two weeks has increased two-fold over last month. The corporation has penalised around 1.70 lakh people in just two weeks, yet people cannot be bothered to wear what is still considered to be the best protective gear against COVID-19.

The city is on the alert in the background of an increasing number of cases in other cities and the possibility of a second wave in the city. But citizens don't seem to think it is anything to worry about. The crowds in markets for Diwali shopping boosted the economy but has also increased the risk of COVID spreading. People were neither following social distancing nor wearing masks. "There are so many people wandering about in public places without masks. If we tell them to pay the fine, they come up with a number of excuses," said an officer with the BMC.

The BMC has revved up action in September following a report in mid-day. In September, there were around 669 people fined every day. The number increased more than eight-fold in October when the BMC reduced the fine to Rs 200 and increased the number of teams. In November, the average number doubled. Approximately 10,000 people have been fined every day for the last two weeks.

"The mask is one of the most important protective gears against COVID. People should keep this fact in mind. Even a homemade mask is enough," said Suresh Kakani, additional commissioner of the BMC. The corporation has collected Rs 7.27 crore in fines from 3.46 lakh people till date.

Fine on masks

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First Published: 19 November, 2020 07:30 IST

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