Easing of mask mandate divides experts 

The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has stated that no challan will be issued for not wearing a mask in Delhi, said sources.

Published: 01st April 2022 08:22 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st April 2022 08:22 AM   |  A+A-

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Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has stated that no challan will be issued for not wearing a mask in Delhi, said sources. However, the experts have varied opinions. While some have said that a month-long wait would have been good before making a decision, others said that adults and children wearing masks in open spaces is of no use. 

According to Dr KS Reddy, president of the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI), a month-long wait would have been better before taking a call on removing strict restrictions on masks. “This might be a good decision but it would not be right to say anything at this moment for sure. We still have to figure out the new variants in Europe,” he said. 

The sources said the DDMA is likely to issue an advisory for people, asking them to wear masks at crowded places. Currently, there is a fine of `500 for not wearing masks at public places. Dr Reddy says that masks while moving on the street without a mask may not be an issue but indoor crowded spaces require masking. 

“Ventilation is absolutely important to prevent the virus from spreading and there is a huge risk in indoor crowded places. Waiting for another month would be ideal,” he added.  Meanwhile, some experts believe that the mask mandate should be relaxed. 

According to Dr Chandrakant Kahariya, epidemiologist, It is the time the Indian government should revise the face mask mandate. “The mask mandate should be relaxed now. There is no need for children to wear masks. We should make face masks voluntary for kids in all settings and for adults in outdoor spaces,” he added. 

Dr Jugal Kishore, head of Community Medicine at Safdarjung Hospital said due to high prevalence of seropositivity, which indicates that more than 80-90 percent of the population has been infected by coronavirus, measures like wearing masks can be done away with. 



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