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YourSpace: Punekars treat mask rule like helmet campaign... wearable when able; hence, fines are a must

“I support wearing masks
By As told to Siddharth Gadkari
PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 11:56 PM IST

“I support wearing masks. It is one of the vital precautions for anyone going outside the home. It is really necessary, but, people are not following it. Therefore, the government has imposed a fine. Despite that, people are ignoring it. Punekars are treating masks like the helmet campaign.

“Another thing which I have to highlight is that political leaders and party workers are not wearing masks during agitations and political gatherings, which we see on the television. It is sending the wrong message to the public. Police should impose a fine on them too, but, it is not happening. The government machinery is collecting fines from common citizens. The law should be equal for all.

Sneha Kamble, primary school teacher

“Though vaccination has started in the country, everyone should take precautions. Wearing a mask is a basic rule which everyone should follow. Government agencies are appealing to everyone from day one to wear a mask, but very few people responded. Now, the government has made it compulsory to wear a mask. It is everyone’s duty to wear it. It becomes a new social ritual to fight against Covid-19.”

Dr Vaishali Jadhav, PMC assistant medical officer

“It is necessary for everyone to wear a mask, especially those who are going to college and office. It is a general perception that youngsters are at the forefront of breaking the rules. This is not true. Most he youngsters are obeying the law, especially related to masks. College students should use masks as a fashion, so it becomes easy to follow the rule. The fine is okay, but, the government should make it half for students, as they have to depend on pocket money.”

Isha Adsul, college student

“People are still not serious about wearing masks. So, the fine amount must increase. People are very keen on their rights, but careless about their duty. People should consider social responsibility and wear masks to stop spreading Covid-19.”

- Aarti Potphode, working woman

“The government administration should take strict action against offenders. Breaking the rule of wearing a mask must be considered a criminal act. Otherwise, people, especially Punekars, will treat it like the helmet rule. People will pay the fine and police will consider it as one of the ways of revenue generation.

Aparna Kirve, housewife

“People are blaming the police for imposing fines without considering fact and situation. This is not true. Our intention is not to fine people and collect money. We care for them. The government made the rule of fines and when the public failed to respond the country faced the worst situation. If we want to avoid it, we should follow the rule.”

Satish Shinde, police constable

“We suffered last year because of the Covid-19 pandemic. We should learn something from that. We should follow very basic things, like wearing a mask. I have observed that people are ready to spend lakhs of rupees for hospitalisation, but are not ready to wear a mask costing Rs50. At least for our families, people should wear masks. Then there is no need to pay a fine.

Prashant Kulkarni, employee at a private company

“Instead of properly sensitising people and convincing them of the need to wear masks, the government has resorted to imposing a fine of 500. Before the second wave, we observed police targeting people and collecting money. It became one of the main agenda, to collect fines for not wearing a mask. After too much criticism, the government gave some relaxation for four-wheelers. On the other hand, the public should also follow the rule.

Sudhir Kulkarni, civic activist

“People are not following rules. Therefore, the government imposed a fine. It is for the people to take care of their health. People are not taking precautions. Actually, the government wants to control Covid-19, but people are not cooperating. We faced a problem last year. To overcome these problems in our day-to-day life, we should have to follow the rule seriously. It is social commitment. I think the fine of Rs500 is a reasonable amount.”

Fakkad Sakore, advocate

“It is necessary to use a mask to avoid the spread of Covid-19. Last year, I had to pay a fine for not wearing a mask. In the evening, I left the office had a mask but it was not on the nose. Police stopped me at a signal and imposed a fine of Rs500. Actually, police and Pune corporation officials should instruct people who wear masks to do so properly. Fine those who don’t wear masks at all. For common people, the amount is heavy. Some people earn 500 in day. How can they pay a fine? I think, the amount should be Rs200 and officials should provide a mask along with the fine.

Political leaders and top officials are not wearing masks. These actions misguide the common public and encourage the public to break the rule. It should be avoided.

Vijay Damale, citizen

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