Due to the Coronavirus outbreak throughout the world, our government announced a nationwide lockdown from 24 march 2020, due to which all institutions, tourist sites, public places, etc. were closed as a preventive measure to tackle the pandemic. As a result of which Taj Mahal, The monument of love, was also closed since March 17. Due to continuous lockdown, our country suffered a major economic setback and since the last few months the government in the attempts to revive the nation’s economy has been easing the restrictions through unlocking of various sectors, and the latest has been the unlocking of Travel and Tourism -sector which makes up almost 10% of INDIA’s G.D.P. and provide around 12 million jobs. The TAJ MAHAL – the most visited tourism site of INDIA has been re-opened for the public after a long gap of 6 months. Here’s is some information that you need to know about it.
Taj Mahal reopened on 21st September 2020 almost after a shutdown of 188 days as a part of unlocking 4.0. It was the first time in history when it was closed for such a long duration. Before this the monument was closed during the Second World War and also during two wars with Pakistan in 1965 and 1971, but the closure had not been so long.
It is perhaps for the first time that the ‘monument of love’, which attracts a large number of tourists to India, had been closed for such a long time– Arun Dang, former president of Tourism Guild
On the first day of reopening after 6 months, the monument witnessed around 300 visitors which is very by far low as compared to the daily average of around 20000 visitors before the pandemic. A Chinese national and a local from Delhi were among the first visitors to enter. The reopening of the tourist site was a sign of relief for the various working-class and local shopkeepers whose livelihoods were dependent upon the earning they earn from the crowd visiting the place. They hope for the international flights to resume soon so that they can earn a good income which has been restricted since the long shutdown of the tourist site.
Yes, we are excited about the reopening of the Taj after such a long duration. A day will come when international flights will resume. In the beginning, domestic tourists from nearby regions would come.– Rajiv Tiwari, president of the Federation of Travel Association of Agra.
The reopening was followed with strict rule of social distancing and thermal screening of visitors at the gate. All covid 19 protocols were strictly followed.
The monument will now remain open from sunrise to sunset for visitors and will remain closed on every Friday. Ticket charges are Rs 50 per visitor and Rs 200 more for entering the mausoleum.
RULES AND REGULATIONS THAT ARE TO BE FOLLOWED :-
- Only 5000 visitors per day will be allowed and they will be divided in two slots of 2500 each , one before lunch and the other after lunch.
- All tickets have to be purchased online.
- Only asymptomatic persons will be allowed who clear the thermal screening at the gate. Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) jawaans will remain at a distance and check visitors with hand-held metal detectors.
- Masks are mandatory inside the monument and strict rules of social distancing are to be followed.
- Group photos are not allowed , however visitors are allowed to take selfies.
- Touching white marbles is not allowed.