Chennai: Hefty fines imposed for violating COVID norms like social distancing, spitting, mask use
Chennai: In the wake of the spike in COVID-19 cases across the state capital, the Chennai Corporation has announced that those violating the coronavirus norms would have to pay hefty fines ranging from Rs 200 to Rs 5,000. Most notable is the Rs 200 fine to be imposed on people who don't wear face masks in public places. Moreover, the fine for spitting in public places has been fixed at Rs 500 and those found doing the same would be challaned on the spot.The Revenue and Disaster Management Department had on Thursday issued important COVID guidelines to be followed due to the sudden and alarming spurt of coronavirus cases. With the medical infrastructure operating at almost maximum capacity, it is vital to control the spread of the deadly virus.The Chennai Corporation will also be issuing fines for violating social distancing norms at public places and the amount has been fixed at Rs 500 for the same.Major hotspots in the spread of the COVID-19 virus have been markets, salons, big stores and other such commercial establishments like gyms and restaurants. The fine for violating social distancing norms in such places would attract a fine of Rs 5,000.To enforce the rules, the Chennai Corporation has set a target for officers in each zone to collect fines for violation of COVID-19 guidelines. Employees who fail to achieve the targets will face disciplinary action.For example, for Zone 1, Rs 20,000 has been fixed as the target. For Zone 3, it's Rs 50,000 and for Zone 5- Rs 1,50,000. GCC says strict disciplinary action will be taken against officials if they don't meet this target.Furthermore, the violation of quarantine measures by citizens who have been advised the same by the administration or doctors will be punishable with a fine of Rs 500. These fines have been introduced due to the public behaviour turning lax with regard to following the COVID protocol especially during the time the pandemic is spreading fast among all age groups.Chennai will observe a weekend lockdown on April 10-11 and all shops including vegetable shops, provision stores, shopping malls, big showrooms have been given the permission to stay open till 11:00 pm but on the condition that all COVID norms would be followed with a maximum capacity of 50 per cent customers in the designated area.