Coronavirus outbreak: ASI-protected monuments including Taj Mahal, central museums to remain shut till 31 March

An order regarding the same has also been issused by the ASI, there are 3,691 centrally protected monuments and sites under the ASI

FP Staff March 17, 2020 19:14:06 IST
Coronavirus outbreak: ASI-protected monuments including Taj Mahal, central museums to remain shut till 31 March

All the Archeological Survey of India (ASI)-protected monuments, including Taj Mahal, and central museums across the country will be shut till 31 March in view of coronavirus outbreak, said Culture and Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patal on Monday.

"The officers concerned are expected to take care and caution" he added.

An order regarding the same has also been issuedf by the ASI. There are 3,691 centrally protected monuments and sites under the ASI.

Given the huge footfalls at such monuments and museums, it was essential to shut them down in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, said the culture and tourism ministry.

Authorities in Maharashtra, which has registered the highest number of positive cases in the country, have decided to close some prominent tourist and religious attractions as a precautionary measure. The world-famous Ajanta and Ellora caves near Aurangabad, the popular Siddhivinayak temple in Mumbai and the Tuljabhawani temple in Osmanabad district would remain closed in view of the situation in the state, officials said.

Entry restrictions to Mantralaya, the State Secretariat in south Mumbai which sees thousands of visitors daily, will also be in force, Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope said.

The hill state Uttarakhand has also prohibited visitors in national parks and tiger reserves including Corbett and Rajaji till 31 March.

In Delhi, the National Museum and Rajghat will be closed till 31 March and Red Fort and Qutub Minar have also been closed temporarily for the public. The Rashtrapati Bhavan, as well as the Mughal Gardens, which attract, a large number of tourists have also been shut temporarily.

In Kolkata, the Victoria Memorial, Indian Museum, Science City and BITM have been shut for tourists. Rabindra Bhavan and Kala Bhavan in Shantiniketan’s Visva Bharati have also been closed.

Follow LIVE updates on Coronavirus Outbreak

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Tuesday said that the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in India rose to 137, with Delhi reporting eight cases, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Tamil Nadu, and Odisha reporting one case each, Haryana reporting 15 cases, Karnataka reporting 11 cases, Kerala reporting 26 cases, Maharashtra reporting 39 cases, Telangana reporting five cases, and union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh reporting three and six cases, respectively, and Uttar Pradesh reporting 15 cases.

With input from agencies

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