• Saturday, Aug 15, 2020
  • Last Update : 01:54 am

India to reopen Taj Mahal with social distancing, masks

  • Published at 03:51 pm July 5th, 2020
The historic Taj Mahal i
The historic Taj Mahal Reuters

Agra, one of India's first big clusters of the virus, remains the worst-affected city in Uttar Pradesh, the country's most populous state

Visitors to the Taj Mahal will have to wear masks at all times, keep their distance and not touch its glistening marble surfaces when India's 17th-century monument to love reopens on Monday after a three-month Covid-19 shutdown.

Only 5,000 tourists will be allowed in a day, split into two groups, a far cry from peak levels of 80,000 a day who would swarm the mausoleum built in the northern city of Agra by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan for his wife, in a 22-year effort.

"All centrally protected monuments & sites shall be bound by the protocols like sanitization, social distancing & other health protocols," the federal tourism ministry said in a tweet.

Authorities are reopening the Taj and other monuments, such as New Delhi's historic Red Fort, just as India's coronavirus infections are rising at the fastest pace in three months.

On Sunday, the health ministry reported a record single-day spike of 24,850 new cases and more than 600 deaths, pushing the overall case tally to 673,165, closing in on Russia, the third-most affected country globally.

But the government has been lifting a vast lockdown of India's 1.3 billion people that has left tens of thousands without work and shuttered businesses.

While international flights remain suspended, domestic travel has been opened up, and the government is hoping visitors will start to trickle back to some popular destinations.

Agra, one of India's first big clusters of the virus, remains the worst-affected city in Uttar Pradesh, the country's most populous state.

"All around the Taj are containment zones," said a local district administration official, requesting anonymity, ahead of the monument's planned reopening.

Containment zones, areas identified as most affected by the virus, remain under strict lockdown, with restricted access and movement of only essential goods and services.

"We don't expect visitors here because clusters around the Taj, including shops and hotels are closed," the official said.

53
52
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail