On Day One of Unlock Delhi, police fined 1,053 persons for not wearing masks

Police said while metal barricades were removed from roads on Monday to facilitate the smooth flow of traffic, their teams still checked vehicles, and patrolled the markets and busy roads to ensure social distancing norms were followed.
On Saturday afternoon, two days before the lockdown norms were eased, all police stations were directed to form teams to conduct checks at market places.(File Photo)
On Saturday afternoon, two days before the lockdown norms were eased, all police stations were directed to form teams to conduct checks at market places.(File Photo)
Updated on Jun 08, 2021 11:45 PM IST
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By, New Delhi

On Monday, the Day One of a gradual unlocking process in the national capital after over a month-and-a-half long (51 days, to be precise) lockdown, Delhi Police fined 1,053 persons for not wearing masks, 229 for not adhering to social distancing norms and three persons for holding large gatherings.

Police said while metal barricades were removed from roads on Monday to facilitate the smooth flow of traffic, their teams still checked vehicles, and patrolled the markets and busy roads to ensure social distancing norms were followed.

On Saturday afternoon, two days before the lockdown norms were eased, all police stations were directed to form teams to conduct checks at market places.

The Delhi District Management Authority(DDMA) has allowed markets to open from Monday with shops directed to open on an “odd-even” basis while standalone shops can open on all days. “Our police commissioner has directed all district deputy commissioners(DCPs) to devise non-coercive methods and take steps to ensure normalcy while ensuring social distancing. All police stations have been asked to be in touch with market welfare associations and vendors. All shops that are open have been directed to have sanitisers ready and ensure that there is no crowding. Senior police officers are also monitoring the activities on the ground,” said DCP Chinmoy Biswal, who is also the Delhi Police spokesperson.

On June 12, there is another meeting of the police brass, in which they will review the Covid-19 violation by citizens during the first five days after the lockdown norms were relaxed.

Based on the review, each district will present a plan on how to ensure that citizens followed Covid appropriate behaviour.

Trader associations said they are asking shopkeepers to remain cautious and follow rules. Ashwani Marwah, general secretary of Lajpat Nagar Traders Association, said,” We have instructed all our members to follow the odd-even scheme for opening shops. Every shop is displaying its address at a visible spot for easy identification. There are a few buildings that have the same number and multiple shops and such shops are being marked as odd and even and every alternate shop is being allowed to open on a given day.”

He said all shop owners have been told to encourage their staff to get vaccinated. “ We are also planning to organise a mass vaccination camp in Lajpat Nagar, where all shopkeepers , their staff and family members can get vaccinated without the hassle of booking slots or standing in queues,” Marwah said.

The government had clamped a lockdown in the national capital on April 19, to control the spread of Covid-19, as Delhi was reporting over 25,000 Covid-19 cases daily at that time, with a daily positivity rate -- samples that came positive among the total tested -- of over 30%. This meant that one in every three persons who were tested for Covid, was positive for the infection.

Currently, the city’s positivity rate is below 1% and the daily cases are also below 500. On Tuesday, according to the state government’s health bulletin, Delhi had 316 fresh cases after conducting 71879 tests and recorded a positivity rate of 0.44%. The World Health Organization (WHO) has said that to contain the spread of the infection in an area, the positivity rate has to remain below 5% for at least 14 days consecutively.

During the lockdown from April 19 to June 7, police issued 104,440 fines for mask violations, 18,034 for violation of social distancing norms, and 1,529 for holding large congregations. All forms of social/political/entertainment/academic/ cultural events, which have mass gatherings and could be potential super spreader events, are still banned in the national capital.

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