- In Jharkhand, no wearing mask could lead to a penalty of up to Rs 1 lakh
- In Gwalior, 'no mask' violators will have to work in hospitals
- In Odisha, not wearing mask fines are up to Rs 500
New Delhi: Amid a surge in coronavirus cases, the Jharkhand government on Wednesday came out with a first-of-its-kind norm for COVID rule violators. The Jharkhand Cabinet approved the Jharkhand Contagious Disease Ordinance under which penalty of up to Rs 1 lakh and a jail term up to two years can be imposed against people who violate COVID-19 preventive measures, like not wearing masks and spitting in public places.
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A detailed copy of the rules is yet to be formulated and it will soon be made public by the government on how the penalty system will work in the state. Jharkhand on Monday reported 457 new cases of COVID-19, while two more people died due to the disease, as per the bulletin issued by the state government. The state’s death toll stands at 85. There are 4,486 active cases in the state, with the infection tally rising to 8,275. According to the officials, the ‘no mask’ penalty decision has come in wake of growing cases of coronavirus in the state.
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Jharkhand is not the first state to have imposed a fine but it is the first state to impose such a heavy fine for the violators.
In Madhya Pradesh’s Gwalior, if people are found without wearing a mask, the administration has decided to teach them a lesson in a unique way. As a part of ‘Kill Corona’ campaign in the city, an order has been issued by the district administration, which states that if citizens are found without maskS or not following the COVID-19 prevention guidelines at public places in Gwalior, then they will have to work as volunteers in hospitals and police check-posts for three days. Fines would also be imposed on those violating the COVID-19 protocols, as per the news media agency PTI. Talking about the initiative, an official heading the ‘Kill Corona’ campaign in the city added,
This has been done because we have seen even if states are collecting fines, people are not adhering to the norms. The purpose here is not to collect fines but create horror in the minds of people so that they never forget to step out of the house without wearing masks.
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On the other hand, in Chandigarh, the officials have made wearing cotton masks a mandate for everyone. Adviser Manoj Parida had issued the order as a part of their strategy to fight coronavirus in the Union Territory. The order stated that not wearing the mask is a punishable offence under Section 188 of the IPC. The punishment of this offence is six-month-long jail along with a fine. The order also clearly states that one riding in private or official/government vehicle will also have to wear the mask. But even with the order in place, it has been seen, many people in Chandigarh had violated the rules. According to the officials, fines worth RS 66,000 were collected from 132 persons for not wearing a face mask in a special drive conducted from 6 pm to midnight on July 3 and July 4, as per the directions of SSP Chandigarh.
In Odisha, which is gaining a lot of attention recently due to the sudden surge in coronavirus cases, violation fine is Rs 200 for first three offences, and in case of the fourth violation and beyond the fine increases to Rs 500. Even then last week, Ganjam district, the worst-hit district in terms of COVID in Odisha along with Berhampur Police collected close to Rs 10 lakh fine.
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Ganjam police have also been creating awareness on the importance of wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing and not spitting in public places to contain the spread of the virus.
Currently, India’s COVID-19 tally crossed 14 lakh cases as of July 27, the Union Health Ministry said this morning that a record single-day jump of 50,000 new coronavirus patients have been registered in the last 24 hours, with more than 32,000 deaths. In the last 24 hours, the Health Ministry recorded 708 coronavirus-linked deaths. From past few days, India has been recording a continuous surge in the number of patients. The country’s recovery rate stood at 63.92 per cent this morning. The positivity rate – the percentage of patients who have tested positive for coronavirus – stood at 9.68 per cent.
NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene.