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₹2,000-fine on those who don’t wear mask in public in Delhi: Kejriwal

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 19, 2020 Published on November 19, 2020

The Delhi government on Thursday hiked the fine for not wearing mask by four times to ₹2,000 from ₹500 to make sure people adopt Covid-appropriate norms when they are in public, said Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

The decision to increase the fine steeply was taken after a meeting between Lt Governor Anil Baijal and Kejriwal and an all-party meeting convened by the Delhi government here. Kejriwal also requested people to celebrate Chhath puja at home rather than in public as the city-State is battling to stem yet another Covid-10 wave. He cited the examples of Haryana, Gujarat and Maharashtra governments which banned Chhath puja in public.

ICU beds

He said following a recent Delhi High Court order, 33 private hospitals in the city would make available 80 per cent of their ICU beds for treating Covid-19 patients from Thursday. This will further increase the number of ICU beds available in private hospitals by 300 to 400. In addition, Delhi government is making available an additional 673 ICU beds and Central government 750 ICU beds for the capital.

According to him, nearly 7,500 existing non-ICU beds and 450 ICU beds are vacant as of now.

Similarly, the private hospitals in the capital are also being asked to increase the percentage of non-ICU beds available for Covid patients to 60 per cent from the earlier 50 per cent, for some time. The hospitals were also told to put off planned, non-critical surgeries till such time the current surge is stemmed.

Expressing gratitude to medical doctors, paramedics and other corona-warriors in Delhi, Kejriwal said their exemplary and selfless work has helped the city fight the pandemic better than many major Metropolitan cities such as New York.

Kejriwal said he requested representatives of political parties who participated in the all-party meeting to keep away from playing politics as the number of cases are going up in the national capital. He also requested political parties and civil society movements to distribute masks to whoever is seen not wearing one in public.

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Published on November 19, 2020
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