Covid-19 in India: Minister dismisses rumours about Maharashtra going mask-free

Citizens have been asked to continue wearing masks until the end of the pandemic

Reuters file
Reuters file

A Staff Reporter

Published: Fri 11 Feb 2022, 2:03 PM

Hours after Maharashta’s health minister Rajesh Tope revealed that the state government had sought information from the centre on measures to be taken to ensure that it becomes mask-free, deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said on Friday that the cabinet had not discussed the matter.

Tope cited the case of the UK and other European countries that have asked citizens to stop wearing masks even in public.

“In the recent cabinet meeting, we discussed making the state mask-free,” he was quoted in the media. “We have requested the central and state task forces to provide us with information on how they achieved it.” But the mask rule would continue for some time as Maharashtra has a huge population, he added.

Pawar denied that the cabinet had taken up the matter. He said all should continue wearing masks until the end of the pandemic.


The state’s daily Covid caseload dropped to 6,248 on Thursday, against 7,142 a day earlier. Mumbai’s Covid cases rose marginally to 429, but were still below the 500-mark for the fourth day consecutively.

Iqbal Chahal, the municipal commissioner, said the city has one of the lowest single-digit mortality rate in the third wave for any comparable city at the national or international levels.

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