Considering the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic outbreak in the state, the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra state government has taken a number of steps to encourage proper hygeine. One of the most important malpractices that should be checked in this backdrop is spitting on roads, which, besides being extremely uncouth, is also potentially dangerous for spreading a contagious virus.

In view of the increasing cases of coronavirus infection in the state, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the governing civic body of the city, increased the amount of fine on people spitting on the streets and public places from Rs 200 to Rs 1,000. The civic body specifically warned citizens to not spit on the streets because it may cause the contagious virus to spread.

COVID-19 is a contagious disease that can spread through the acts of coughing, sneezing, and spitting of the infected patient. In addition, leaving one’s spit in the midst of a public place also causes other diseases and infections to spread, other than the coronavirus. Therefore, as a precaution, BMC is imposing a fine of one thousand rupees on those who spit on public places.

The civic body is commissioning marshals to be particularly vigilant and start charging fines against people spitting in Mumbai’s public places. According to reports from local media, BMC has already extracted a staggering amount of Rs 1.07 lakh from more than 100 people over the past day for spitting in public.

“Spitting at crowded places increases the risk of spreading the disease. Therefore, strict measures are being taken to prevent this. The fine levied for spitting in public places has been hiked from Rs 200 to Rs 1000,” a local publication quoted BMC Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi.

Earlier, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the governing civic body of the city, had also urged shops, especially those in congested areas, to remain closed for the timebeing. In view of this, the Ghatkopar board has decided to keep shops in the area closed for three days. According to reports, when the shops resume activities from Monday (March 24), they will likely operate on alternate days (the odd-and-even rule), on appropriate recommendation of the BMC.

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