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Law

Gujarat Govt Collected Over Rs 252 Crore for Mask Violations in a Year

The affidavit submitted by the state government also said that between March 25, 2020, and June 28, 2021, the state police distributed 57.45 lakh masks to offenders.

New Delhi: Following a public interest litigation (PIL), the Gujarat government submitted an affidavit before the Gujarat high court which stated that 37.42 lakh Gujaratis had paid Rs 252 crore from June 24, 2020 till June 28, 2021 for not wearing masks, according to a report from Times of India.

As per the affidavit, Ahmedabad’s police collected Rs 53.21 crore as fine for 6.63 lakh COVID-19 mask violation cases, which was the highest number of cases in the state. The second highest number of mask violations cases was recorded in Rajkot, where Rs 25.12 crore was collected as fine by the cops between June 24, 2020, and June 28, 2021.

The affidavit filed by the health and family welfare department secretary Atul Patel on Thursday also said that the district of Dang had recorded the lowest number of cases (6,350) in around a year for which Rs 49 lakh fine was collected by the cops.

The affidavit also said that between March 25, 2020, and June 28, 2021, the state police distributed 57.45 lakh masks to offenders.

In addition to the money collected as fine for mask violations, the police have also received around Rs 101 crore as fine for curfew violations in a year. On an average, Rs 1 crore fine was collected everyday for offences of not wearing a mask and venturing out during curfew hours.

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Furthermore, 5.13 lakh cases were also registered by the Gujarat police for violating social norms which include gatherings in marriage and social functions.

In comparison, Uttar Pradesh had collected Rs 64.16 lakh from 31,325 people as fine for mask violations in public places during a 35-hour curfew imposed in April earlier this year. The state government has increased the fine for mask violations in public to Rs 1,000 for the first offence and Rs 10,000 for the second offence after COVID-19 cases in the state rose exponentially.

Civic authorities in Mumbai collected over Rs 54 crore as fines in the last one year from 26.87 lakh citizens who violated the COVID-19 mask rule in public places during the pandemic.

Data from Bengaluru’s Municipal Corporation showed that Rs 8.76 crore was collected as fine for not wearing mask between May 2020 and February 7, 2021, and that over 3.70 lakh cases had been filed. 25,525 cases were also filed against citizens for not maintaining social distancing in the same period.

A report by News18 has estimated that, in the last one year, authorities have collected over Rs 368 crore as fine for non-compliance with COVID-19 protocol.