Visakhapatnam Commissioner of Police Rajeev Kumar Meena on Wednesday announced that wearing protective face masks for all citizens is mandatory henceforth, in a bid to contain the spread of coronavirus in the city. Citizens in Visakhapatnam found stepping out in public without wearing a protective face mask will now be charged a fine of Rs 100 for violating the rule.
Apart from announcing that the absence of face mask will attract a fine, the Visakhapatnam Commissioner also stated that strict physical distancing norms must be followed by people attending any gatherings in the city. Guidelines were passed to not mingle closely within groups, use sanitizers and disinfect the gathering areas thoroughly before and after any events. The Police Commissioner stated that organisers found violating the above guidelines and people attending such potentially dangerous meetings in Vizag will attract police action. It was revealed that cases will be registered against the violators in line with the Indian Penal Code (IPC) Act and Disaster Management Act.
The top officer also appealed to the citizens to reach out for help in case someone they know, or they themselves, exhibit symptoms of COVID-19. In an official statement, the Police Commissioner asked the citizens to dial ‘100’ for COVID-19 related assistance. Citizens in Visakhapatnam have also been requested to cooperate with the medical department, police, sanitisation department employees, and volunteers in the district’s fight against the fast-spreading virus.
The Visakhapatnam Commissioner said that the citizens must be vigilant in wake of the rising cases both in the district and the state. He reiterated that the police department will be forced to take action against violators of the rules set forth by the Andhra Pradesh state government.
As of Wednesday, 24 June 2020, Vizag reported 41 new COVID-19 cases, taking the total cases in the district to 571. Of the 571, 320 cases have been marked active while 247 individuals were discharged post-testing negative for the virus. Fifteen new containment clusters were identified and sealed off from other areas in order to contain the spreading of the virus.