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Face mask use mandatory in Mira-Bhayandar, violators to face arrest

Any resident found without wearing a face mask at a public place in Mira Road or Bhayandar would now be liable for punishment under Section 188 IPC (Disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) and immediate arrest by Thane Rural Police. An order in this regard was issued by Chandrakant Dange, Commissioner of Mira-Bhayandar Municipal Corporation on Thursday.

A decision to make face mask use mandatory for the residents to wear a mask or cloth to cover their faces in a public place was taken after it is learned that covering a face can help to combat the spread of COVID-19.

The order issued stated, “All persons moving for whatsoever purpose and under whatever reason/authority in public places like street, hospital, office and markets must wear a 3-ply mask or cloth mask compulsorily.  Any person moving around in his personal and official vehicle for essential services also must be wearing these masks compulsorily.”

“This face mask use may be standard mask available with the chemist or even homemade washable masks and can be reused after proper washing and disinfecting them,” it stated. “It is mandatory for wearing of masks for persons working at any site/office/workplace etc. No person/officer/officials will attend any meeting/gathering without wearing these masks.

It shall be the responsibility of the employer to ensure that his/her employees wear the 3-ply mask or cloth mask without fail, the order said.

Violators may booked

“Any violating these instructions will be punishable under the Section 188 of IPC and the Police Authorities are empowered to immediately arrest the violators,” it further stated.

On the use of face masks, the order elaborated, “It has been observed in some studies that wearing of facial masks can reduce the spread of coronavirus substantially, from and to persons coming in contact with each other, apart from compulsory social distancing measures. It has become imperative that in the larger public interest, COVID-19 being contagious in nature and already strict observance of lockdown and isolation measures being enforced by the administration, now wearing of masks by any person who is moving in any public space is essential to protect themselves from the infected persons.”

Not only is Mira-Bhayandar, but Mumbai, Delhi, UP, Chandigarh, Jammu & Kashmir and Odisha have also reportedly issued a mandate for face masks. Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal shared a post that mentioned wearing masks compulsory when going out.