The Archaeological Survey of India has in a circular announced reopening of monuments from June 16…reports Asian Lite News.
The Archaeological Society of India (ASI) said that the Taj Mahal and other monuments protected by it and remained closed for visitors for the last two months due to the pandemic will reopen on June 16.
With some respite on the Covid-19 pandemic front, after steep decline in numbers, the district authorities are all set to welcome domestic tourists to the historical monuments in Agra.
In the wake of alarming rise in the number of Covid patients, the Taj and other monuments were shut down for visitors, two months ago.
The Archaeological Survey of India has in a circular announced reopening of monuments from June 16.
“During the closed period, mud pack treatment will be applied to the main dome of Taj Mahal while conservation of minarets in the monument will be done. The old stones of pietra dura art at the royal gate will be changed and the gate itself will be given a new look,” ASI’s superintending archaeologist (Agra circle) Vasant Kumar Swarnkar said.
The tourism industry captains in Agra have welcomed the decision and have asked for resumption of international flights. Hoteliers have also demanded sops and a special package to help the industry steer out of the crisis. “At least some relief can be considered in taxes and electricity bills,” said senior hotelier Surendra Sharma.
Hotels in Agra have been either shut or partially opened since March 2020. The Covid-19 pandemic has virtually crippled the hospitality and travel industry, which have been demanding special schemes and sops to ease the pangs from continued shut down.
Though the reopening of the monuments would help to some extent, but until international flights were resumed, there could be no positive turn around, feel the hoteliers.
The 17th century monument of love, the Taj Mahal attracted more than seven million tourists annually, before the pandemic.
District officials indicated that visitors to the monuments would need to take appropriate precautions before they are allowed entry. Care would be taken to ensure there was no crowding. Initially tickets would be issued online.
For the past one week, there has been a welcome decline in the daily numbers of Covid-19 patients. In the past 24 hours only six cases were reported.
Health department officials said the city’s medical infrastructure had been streamlined, and necessary follow up measures were being taken in the rural areas.
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