[Covid] Masks not mandatory for people driving alone in cars: Delhi government

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The Delhi government on Friday announced that masks will no longer be mandatory for people driving alone in cars in the capital.

An order to that effect was issued by the Special Secretary (Health and Family Welfare).

“The DDMA after examining all the relevant facts related to the issue of penal provisions for not adhering to the covid protocol of wearing of mask at public places, decided that, in relation to the clause 3(h) (c) whereby not wearing of face mask/cover in all public places has been made an offence, the penalty under this provision of the said notification will not be applicable to a lone person in a self driven four wheeler vehicles,” the order said.

The decision came a week after a Division Bench of the Delhi High Court observed that the Delhi government’s order making face masks mandatory for those travelling alone in cars was “absurd.”

“We hope and expect the DDMA to look into all aspects and issue fresh orders with regards to instructions,” the Court had said.

Interestingly, the Delhi High Court had in an order passed in April 2021, ruled that wearing of mask in a vehicle is compulsory during the COVID-19 pandemic even if it is occupied only by its driver and has no other occupants.

“Wearing of a mask of a face cover in a vehicle, which may be occupied by either a single person or multiple persons, is… compulsory in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the Court had said.

A Delhi Disaster Management Authority notification on Friday also, among other things, further relaxed COVID curbs and said educational and office places could open with full force from Monday, subject to protocol being followed.

Read Order here:

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