All Centrally-protected monuments, museums and natural heritage sites reopened for tourists on Wednesday after being shut for nearly two months due to the second Covid wave.
Taj Mahal, Qutub Minar, Humayun’s Tomb, Red Fort and other sites protected by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) opened their doors to visitors today after they were thoroughly sanitised.
Tourists can henceforth visit these sites after booking tickets online. No offline ticket booking services will be available and all visitors will strictly have to abide by Covid-19 protocols.
At the moment, 3,693 monuments and 50 museums across India are protected by the ASI. These sites were shut on April 15 due to a spike in coronavirus infections across the country.
According to an ASI order issued earlier, the reopening of these monuments will be in strict compliance with the executive orders, if any, issued by the state, district or the disaster management authority.
Appropriate guidelines and SOPs issued by Union and states governments, ministries and departments will be scrupulously followed while regulating the flow of visitors, the order stated.
Last year, all monuments and sites maintained by the ASI were closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic on March 17. They reopened in July with strict restrictions like mandatory wearing of masks, a cap on the number of visitors and social distancing. The curbs were relaxed later in the year. However, due to the surge in cases again this year, these monuments were closed for the public.
(With PTI inputs)