Amaravati: In view of the surge in COVID-19 cases in the state, the Andhra Pradesh government on 20 April announced Rs. 100 fine against any individual caught not wearing masks in public places.

"Wearing masks in public places is mandatory and non-compliance will attract a penalty of Rs. 100. The police personal on duty are authorized to impose and collect such penalty," said Aditya Nath Das, the AP chief secretary.

The government clarified that masks should cover both the nose and mouth at all times.

The government also ordered that all individuals shall maintain a physical distance of five feet in all public places and establishments. "People in charge of these establishments shall be responsible for enforcing physical distance," said the chief secretary.

The government has instructed that in any public place or venue with seats, the alternative seats shall be kept vacant in order to maintain physical distance. "At public places or venues without fixed seating, a distance of five feet should be maintained," it said.

It also announced the closure of swimming pools with immediate effect in the state.

Meanwhile, amid the surge in COVID19 cases in the state, the Telangana government on April 20, announced 'night curfew' beginning Tuesday till April 30, 2021. The night curfew will be imposed from 9 pm to 5 am beginning today.

"The various measures to control COVID-19 in the state have been reviewed. It is decided to introduce a night curfew in the state for the period from 9 pm to 5 am the next day till 30th April 2021 as a further measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The order came after Telangana High Court on Monday asked the state government to take a call on imposing a night curfew," said Somesh Kumar, Chief Secretary, Telangana Government.

This order came after Telangana High Court on April 19 directed the state government to take a call on imposing night curfew or weekend lockdown to check the spread of the virus.

"If the government does not act on this in the next 48 hours, the court will pass orders," said the court.

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