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Why there cannot be a uniformity in fine for not wearing masks? Bombay HC asks Maharashtra govt

A public interest litigation (PIL) informed the court that the fine amount ranged from INR 100 to INR 1,000 in different parts of the state and was causing a financial strain on citizens already affected by the lockdown.

Why there cannot be a uniformity in fine for not wearing masks? Bombay HC asks Maharashtra govt
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The Bombay High Court on Wednesday, March 24, questioned the Maharashtra government why the amount of fine for not wearing masks is not uniform across the state. It also sought clarification on fines on people travelling in their personal vehicles.

Moreover, a public interest litigation (PIL) informed the court that the fine amount ranged from INR 100 to INR 1,000 in different parts of the state and was causing a financial strain on citizens already affected by the lockdown.

The PIL sought details of the total amount of fine collected by authorities across the state and details on how and where the amount was being utilised.

Meanwhile, the court also directed to formulate masks with specific signs or symbols for hearing and speech-impaired persons who are facing several issues from the funds collected through fines.

A division bench of Justice S P Deshmukh and Justice G S Kulkarni was hearing a PIL filed by Lokshahiwadi Balasaheb Sarode Smriti Prabodhan Upakram, through advocate Asim Sarode, which said that while the state government had made it compulsory to wear masks, there is no uniformity in the amount collected as fine and it differs from place to place.

The NGO’s advocate Asim Sarode argued that different amounts of fine are collected by various authorities like PMC, police and SWD. People are confused. The amounts differ from place to place, he added.

Apart from Pune, the PIL explained the situation in cities like Mumbai, Aurangabad, Nagpur, Kolhapur and Ahmednagar.

Counsel for the government, Priyabhushan Kakade, sought time to respond to the concerns raised in the PIL and submitted that the replies would be given in a week, which was accepted by the bench and the hearing was adjourned to next week.

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