Bengaluruâ€™s civic body, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) on Tuesday night issued new guidelines related to wearing masks amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Starting Wednesday, it will be mandatory for all those who are driving cars, even if they are alone and have the windows closed, to wear masks. In September this year, the Union Health Ministry announced that it was not necessary to wear masks while driving alone in a car.
BBMP Commissioner Manjunath Prasad issued the order on Tuesday. According to it, irrespective of whether a person is alone in a car, or has the windows opened or closed, they must wear a face mask. The same applies to two-wheeler riders and also pillion riders.
In its order, the civic body states that the positivity rate for coronavirus infections in Bengaluru has come down to 9% in October, compared to 12.79% in September. The civic body said that in order to maintain the trend and keep the number of COVID-19 cases low in the city, there was a need to strictly enforce COVID-19 norms like wearing masks and maintaining physical distance.
In addition to marshals and traffic police personnel who are enforcing COVID-19 guidelines, the BBMP has also formed ward-level committees to monitor and enforce these norms. The ward committees will have a BBMP assistant engineer, a health inspector, a ward marshal and a police officer appointed by the Police Commissioner. These ward committees will be monitored by Divisional Committees. There will be 198 ward committees, 27 divisional committees and eight zonal committees that will monitor the divisional ones.
A fine of Rs 250 will be imposed for violating norms like not wearing masks or failing to maintain physical distance.