The order issued on January 13 said that it would come into force with immediate effect.
However, the government has not explained the reasons for making masks compulsory in all public places, workplaces, social gatherings, and in all vehicles.
But the government’s view is that the state has never withdrawn the order of wearing masks in public places.
“The decision should be seen as a precautionary measure. No need for any alarm. Also owing to the rise in influenza cases it is good to wear masks and use sanitisers as part of hygienic measures. The norm regarding the use of masks was never taken off in Kerala,’’ Tinku Biswal, principal secretary, health, said.
Apart from this, the use of sanitisers has also been made compulsory in all shops, offices, theatres and in all places where people gather. The order has also directed to ensure social distancing in all public places.
It was in August 2022 that the government had extended the wearing of masks compulsory in the state for six more months.
However, the latest order has not mentioned whether a fine will be slapped against the violators.
The order has been issued under the Epidemic Diseases Act.
However, the state has been witnessing a lesser number of cases in January.
Till January 15, only 637 Covid cases have been reported in the state. On an average, 40 to 50 cases are being reported in a day.