NEWDELHI : Amid reports of police personnel prosecuting people for not wearing masks while driving alone, the Union health ministry on Friday said that it has not issued any guidelines recommending wearing of a mask if someone is driving a car or cycling alone.

Responding to a question during a press brief in New Delhi, Health secretary Rajesh Bhushan said that there was no directive from the health ministry that people should wear masks when they are driving a car without any co-passengers.

Bhushan, however, added if someone is exercising, cycling or jogging in a group, they should wear masks and maintain social distancing so as not to infect each other.

“Of late there is an increased awareness among people about physical activity and you must have seen people cycling or jogging in groups of two or three. If you are cycling or jogging in a group you need to wear a mask and maintain social distancing so as not to infect each other,” Mr Bhushan said

A large number of people have complained of late about being challaned for not wearing a mask while being inside in their cars as the COVID-19 cases soared in the country.

However, it does not imply that the person not wearing the mask could not be challaned.

The lockdown guidelines issued by the Union home ministry mandate wearing of mask while stepping out. According to the home ministry’s National Directive for Covid-19 Management, “Wearing of face cover is compulsory in public places; in workplaces; and during transport”.

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