Delhi Govt Makes Masks Mandatory In Public Places, Those In Private Cars Exempted

New Delhi: In the wake of a surge in Covid-19 cases again, the Delhi government on Friday made wearing of masks mandatory at public places with immediate effect and those flouting the norm would have to pay a fine of Rs 500.

However, those travelling on private vehicles have been exempted from the Health and Family Welfare Department’s rule of fine.

In a meeting last Wednesday, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) had decided to make masks mandatory at public places.

Earlier, on April 2, the Delhi government had lifted the fine of Rs 500 for flouring the mask rule at public places as Covid cases were fairly under control.

Meanwhile, amid the ongoing surge in daily Covid cases in the national capital, health experts have warned about the possibilities of new variants of Omicron and said that they are being sequenced in the city.

The warning comes after Delhi on Wednesday reported as many as 1,009 fresh cases of Coronavirus, the highest since February with positivity rate surging to 5.70 per cent.

A report by news agency ANI stated that experts have identified as many as eight variants of Omicron and out of them, one is majorly responsible for the recent spike in Covid cases.

Sources have even told the news agency that BA.2.12.1 is the variant which is considered to be a sibling of Omicron and is responsible for the sudden jump in cases in Delhi. Dr SK Sarin, Director, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS), also warned people to be careful in the days to come.

“I would suggest people should be careful. There is a fear that children may get infected because they are not adequately vaccinated. People must wear masks,” he added.

Dr Sarin’s warning comes after India on Thursday logged a spike of 2,380 fresh Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, against the 2,067 infections registered the previous day.

In the same period, there were 56 additional Covid-19 fatalities which increased the nationwide death toll to 522,062.

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