Mumbai: Amid hundreds of anti-mask activists, who call themselves 'anti-maskers', protesting the mandatory use of masks across the city, Mumbai Police has yet again reiterated their pleas to the citizens to don a mask. Those caught without a mask have been penalised ₹200, which earlier cost 10 times the current amount. Police data has revealed that the most violations recorded for not wearing a mask was observed in north Mumbai (Dahisar to Goregaon) with over 2,389 police actions initiated in the matter.
Over six months into the Novel Coronavirus pandemic outbreak, the country's financial capital Mumbai, which is a premier Covid-19 hotspot, still sees a number of citizens roaming around the city without masks. Mumbaikars are spotted out and about without wearing any masks. Upon interception, the violators come up with creative excuses from an inability to breathe to sweating that serves as a deterrent for not wearing a mask. This callous and casual attitude of people has forced the police force and the civic authorities to still convince the citizens to don a mask for their own safety.
According to the Mumbai Police data, between April 18 and October 8, as many as 5,950 people were caught without masks, of which over 2,389 were caught in north Mumbai (Dahisar to Goregaon). The figures were followed by those in west Mumbai (Jogeshwari to Bandra) with 1,278 violations and 1,210 violations in east Mumbai (Ghatkopar to Govandi). The least number of mask violations were recorded in south Mumbai (Pydhonie to Marine Drive) with just 371 cases followed by central Mumbai (Dadar to NM Joshi Marg) at 708. Meanwhile, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has also fined more than 14,000 people in the city for mask violations.
The anti-mask movement has lately gained momentum across the world with bizarre theories like they cause breathing problems, or it is a government’s propaganda to instigate fear among the masses.
Contrary to such baseless theories, the doctors have suggested that wearing a mask is one of the top precautions amid the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic.
In a bid to deter the mask violations and ensure a strict rule to wear one, police and the BMC have tried different ways from levying a fine to sit-ups in public, which recently changed to barring the entry for those not wearing masks inside public transport or shops.