Delhi HC terms state govt order to wear mask in car while driving alone “absurd”, asks why is it still continuing

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Delhi High Court on Tuesday observed that the order of the state government to make wearing a mask mandatory while driving a car alone is “absurd” and questioned the government “why is the order still continuing”.

A bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh asked Delhi government counsel to take instruction in this regard.

“Why don’t you withdraw it? It is absurd actually. You are sitting in your own car and you must wear the mask,” the Court remarked.
However, the remark of a court came when a Senior Advocate appearing for the Delhi government apprised the court about such challan.

Senior Advocate Rahul Mehra, representing the Delhi government, apprised the court about the high court’s single judge order of April 7, 2021, relating to not to interfere with the Delhi government’s decision to issue challans for not wearing a mask while driving a private car alone.

However, he said that the situation was different when the DDMA issued this order and now the situation is improving. The advocate said that said order should be revisited.
These remarks were made when the court was dealing with various issues relating to COVID-19.

Delhi High Court on April 7, 2021, ruled that wearing a mask or face cover in a vehicle occupied by either a single person or multiple persons is compulsory in view of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic. The Court order had come on petitions challenging challans. One of the advocates has challenged a challan issued against him for not wearing a mask despite him being alone in the car while driving.

According to the petitioner, on September 9 2020, Delhi Police issued a challan of Rs 500 for not wearing a mask even though he was alone in the car while driving to work.

The petitioner argued that the DDMA guidelines only states that the mask has to be worn in a public place or place of work.

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