While the delhi Police have been fining people for not wearing masks in delhi even while driving alone in their cars, the health ministry on Thursday said it is not compulsory for not wearing masks in delhi if a single person is not accompanied by any other person. Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Thursday said the guidelines released by the Union health ministry do not say anything about whether a person driving a car on their own has to wear a mask. “As for exercise, you must have seen there has been an increased awareness about physical activities among people. You must have seen people cycling and jogging in groups of two or three,” Bhushan said. He said, when such activities are taking place, people should wear masks and maintain social distancing to ensure they do not infect one another. “However, if you are cycling alone, then the guideline does not say anything about wearing a mask,” Bhushan added.

wearing masks in delhi

If there is more than one person in a car and group of people are exercising then wearing a mask and maintaining social distancing so as not to infect each other, Secretary in the Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan said at a press briefing.

Complaints against challans

A large number of people have complained of late about being challenged for not wearing a mask while being inside in their cars as the COVID-19 cases soared in the country.


Responding to a question if it is necessary to wear a mask while driving a car or cycling alone, Bhushan clarified, “There are no guidelines from the Health Ministry on wearing a mask if a person is driving a car or riding a cycle alone.”

On average, the Delhi Police have been issuing fines against 1,200 to 1,500 people every day for riding a vehicle without face masks.


Police are not wrong

When asked by Hindustan Times, a senior Delhi Police officer said till date they are following guidelines issued by the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), dated June 13, which say any person who is not wearing a face mask in a public place shall be liable for fine of 500.


“Because a car is considered a public place, we are issuing fines. Any officer of the rank of a sub-inspector or above can issue the fine. We are yet to receive any written order that states otherwise. As soon as we receive the new directives, we will start following them,” the police officer said.


Mean-while, India’s COVID-19 tally went past 39 lakh on Friday with 83,341 fresh cases reported in a span of 24 hours, while the number of recoveries crossed the 30-lakh mark, pushing the recovery rate of coronavirus patients in the country to 77.15 percent, according to the Union health ministry. The total number of COVID-19 cases mounted to 39,36,747, while the death toll due to the disease climbed to 68,472 with 1,096 people succumbing to it in a day, the ministry’s data updated at 8 am showed. The COVID-19 case fatality rate has further declined to 1.74 percent in the country. There are 8,31,124 active coronavirus cases in the country, which account for 21.11 percent of the total caseload, the data stated.