Agra/Lucknow: After remaining out of bounds for visitors for six months, the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort, along with several archaeological monuments in Uttar Pradesh, was thrown open to public on Monday.
According to district authorities, strict Coronavirus safety measures will be followed to contain the spread of the virus which had trigged the lockdown.
After a gap of 188 days, only 5,000 visitors would be permitted at the Taj Mahal as of now and 2,500 can visit the Agra Fort. As per Covid-19 protocol- following social distancing and mask wearing will be ensured at the monument. Tourists will be allowed to enter in shifts.
Delhi based tourist, Subham was the first to enter the epitome of love (Taj Mahal) at around 0540 hrs from the western gate followed by a Chinese tourist, Lian Chang from the eastern gate.
The tickets of Taj Mahal and Red Fort are being sold only through online.
Apart from the Taj Mahal and Agra Fort, the iconic Bada Imambara and Chhota Imambara in Lucknow have also been reopened from today onwards with adherence to complete Covid protocols.
The reopening of the monuments – which had been closed for the public since March 17 comes amid the process of ‘Unlock 4’ in Uttar Pradesh. Other historical monuments like Etmauddaula’s tomb, Sikandra, and Fatehpur Sikri were reopened from September 1.
With the decision of reopening the Taj Mahal and Agra Fort, the hospitality and tourism industry are hopeful that the looming economic crisis will be curtailed.
As per the unlock 4 guidelines, the Uttar Pradesh government allowed open-air theatres, sports, religious activities to be reopened while lockdown would continue in the containment zones and those violating the guidelines will face legal action.
However, the UP government has not allowed schools and colleges to reopen and a decision would be taken in October.