Mumbai: BMC had been fining people Rs 1,000 since April
It recently issued order about fine for those not wearing masks, however it has been collecting fines since April 15; from April 9-June 30 it collected Rs 20,11,300 in fines
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) issued an order on Monday about imposing a fine of Rs 1,000 on those not wearing a mask. But it has already been collecting Rs 1,000 as a fine from April 15. It has also collected fines worth over Rs 20 lakh between April 9 and June 30 for the same reason. After the new order, clean up marshals collected Rs 35,000 in fines on Tuesday.
Initially no arrest
The BMC had issued an order on April 8 making masks mandatory and threatened violators with arrest, but did not mention a fine. However, the BMC started collecting fines from April 9, initially Rs 200 per person. It collected R1,200 from six people till April 11. But from April 15, the marshals began to collect Rs 1,000 per person and collected Rs 21,000 in fines.
From April 15 to June 29, the BMC collected fines worth Rs 19,75,100 from 2,017 persons. As per the records, the BMC even warned 5,169 people about not wearing a mask. From April 9 to June 30, the BMC collected Rs 20,11,300 in fines. The police and clean up marshals are authorised to take action.
'Not for revenue generation'
"Despite several guidelines and awareness, it is observed that many people are wandering in public places without a mask. So the BMC started acting. It is for the safety of citizens and not for revenue generation," said an officer from the BMC.
The order issued by Municipal Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal states that the masks may be three-ply, plain cloth ones, or even homemade washable ones. But people on streets and in offices, shops, markets, clinics and hospitals, travelling in their personal or official vehicles or public transport, attending meetings and gatherings must wear a mask.
As per the data with the BMC, on Tuesday 35 people were fined. Out of 35 people, 24 were from Kandivali, six were from Andheri E, two were from Dahisar and one each from Byculla, Malad and Borivali. Another 67 people were warned.
The commissioner decided it was necessary to emphasise on safety and clarity on the amount of fine. "Earlier the amount was not specified. We issued the order to reiterate and actually started to collect fines," said Chahal.
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