Are we ‘mask’ing it? Covid safety takes back seat
CHENNAI: “Mask it or risk it,” was the key takeaway that 2020 left us all with. By now, the familiarity with the virus, has made us adapt a laid-back approach towards it. Festival seasons, social gatherings and movie releases are testing times; wait... all these together have filled our calender this week. So, how well ‘mask disciplined’ are we?
It’s a known fact that the city corporation collects fine for Covid-19 safety protocol violations. But the civic body is also diversifying its focus to other important areas other than the virus. Imposing fines is not a primary function, say corporation officials. According to them, the civic body collected `20.7 lakh as fine in the month of December.
In comparison, it has collected up to `4 lakh in a single day in September. “We are still continuing to do our best. We keep an eye on public places. We have also increased the fine from the initial Rs 100 to Rs 200 per person for failure to wear masks in public masks,” said a corporation official. “As we have to focus on other things too,” he continued, “like the civic infrastructure projects, road development, etc., that have been pending due to the lockdown.
We also have the police to help us in this regard in each division, but now, we hope that the people will take up the responsibility for their own safety,” the official added. At this stage of the pandemic, the usage of masks has drastically gone down in public areas such as walking courses, parks and also in marriages and other celebrations. “We had insisted on mask wearing, but we noticed that even the senior citizens did not feel the need to follow it during the entire affair,” said Kalpana Gopal, who got married recently.