While BBMP has authorized its field agents to collect between Rs 10,000 and Rs 1 lakh from businesses such as hotels, convention halls and retail stores, the latest notification from the health and welfare department -being family set a fine of Rs 10,000 for air-conditioned units. and Rs 5,000 for non-AC companies.
Senior BBMP officials said the latest notification will replace the BBMP’s fine structure and the civic body will issue a revised notification explaining the penalty structure.
Sections of businessmen feared that BBMP field staff would continue to harass them armed with the BBMP notification until the civic body issued a new one. The notification from the health department that removes the mention of small businesses such as hotels, fast food outlets, darshinis, roadside food vendors, small shops, etc., could leave field staff in the dark. BBMP confused. The health ministry did not say whether small entrepreneurs were exempt from sanctions.
The BBMP had notified heavy fines to prevent people from gathering in public places and to strictly enforce mask culture.
Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce President KV Chandrashekar said if ministries such as BBMP and the Ministry of Health worked together, it would avoid confusion about fines. âIf they (citizens) can be penalized Rs 250 for not wearing masks, why are we being asked to pay Rs 10,000?
Karnataka Pradesh Hotel and Restaurant Association president B Chandrashekar Hebbar urged authorities to drop the fines. âIn a hotel, if there are 100 people and 30 people are not wearing masks, why should we pay fines? he wondered.
Mask while driving
The health service had ordered lone occupants of cars to wear masks if the windows were down. However, wearing a mask is not compulsory if there is only one occupant and all windows are closed.