The authorities in the tourism capital of Maharashtra, Aurangabad have warned of severe action with stiff penalties for all autorickshaw drivers, people in travel and transport industry, shops, hotels, restaurants, liquor shops employees and workers in offices or factories - who are not vaccinated with at least one dose - from November 25.
Collector Sunil Chavan said that those found violating the orders shall be dealt with under the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, as per the orders issued late Monday night.
The crackdown has started with impounding of autorickshaws, tour and travel operators banned from selling tickets to those who are not vaccinated and other measures. "If autorickshaw drivers are found without having taken even the first dose of vaccine, the authorities concerned will impound the autorickshaw and impose a fine," a district statement said.
The latest orders came soon after the district authorities asked petrol pumps not to sell petrol-diesel to people who have not been inoculated with at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.
The autorickshaw drivers and passenger vehicle operators are among the priority list as many people use this mode of transport adding to the risks of the infection spreading. "The autorickshaw drivers are requested to take at least the first Covid-19 dose... Otherwise, during checks by the Regional Transport Officer, the autorickshaw will be seized and a penalty will be imposed," said the statement.
Similarly, the Deputy Labour Commissioner and Deputy FDA Commissioner will check the vaccination jab certificates of labourers, shops, hotels, restaurants, etc and those establishments found violating shall be sealed and penalised, while liquor shops with unvaccinated workers shall be punished by the State Excise Department.
Incidentally, Aurangabad district ranks among the lowest in Maharashtra - 26th among the 36 - in terms of total vaccination. Official data reveals that of the 32,24,677 eligible population, only 64.36 per cent have got their first jabs and 27.78 per cent are fully vaccinated till date.
Earlier, the district had ordered fair price shops, gas companies, petrol stations and other outlets to check the vaccination certificates of customers and even barred entry for the un-jabbed at the historic monuments and tourism sites in the region.
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