Concerned over the lackadaisical approach of some local residents in following even the basic steps needed to prevent spread of Covid-19 in the city, Pune authorities have decided to strictly implement the mandatory mask rule in the city and penalise those violating it.
“The state government has directed strict implementation of mandatory mask rule by local residents. The Pune Municipal Corporation as well as Pune Police have been asked to take action against those not wearing masks,” said Divisional Commissioner Dipak Mhaisekar.
District Collector Naval Kishore Ram cautioned that local residents shouldn’t assume that since the ‘unlockdown’ was underway, the disease had gone away. “The way some residents are behaving in the city is a cause of concern. The relaxation of lockdown does not mean the pandemic has subsided. The unlocking has been done for economic reasons,” he said.
There seemed to be a collective psycholgical response among residents about being out of danger, said Ram. “The situation is worrying. This is a time when everyone should wear masks. People should avoid bad habits and instead, create public awareness on steps to be taken for avoiding spread of infection,” he said.
The collector said checking the spread of the infection was not only the responsibility of the government, but also the responsibility of local residents.
While the PMC has been distributing masks to local residents in containment zones, elected representatives have been using local area development funds to supply masks in their respective electoral wards.
After it was observed that social distancing norms were also being flouted by many, the city police recently issued an advisory for local residents to follow the rules and maintain social distancing in public place. It also suggested best practices for housing societies to prevent the spread of the infection.
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