Taj Mahal among Agra monuments that will remain shut after city sees spike in COVID-19 cases

Local authorities issued a new advisory late on Sunday ordering an extension of lockdown curbs on monuments in and around Agra. The government order did not specify the duration of the lockdown.

Reuters July 06, 2020 12:53:18 IST
Taj Mahal among Agra monuments that will remain shut after city sees spike in COVID-19 cases

New Delhi: India has withdrawn a planned reopening of the Taj Mahal, citing the risk of new coronavirus infections spreading in Agra from visitors flocking to see the 17th-century monument to love.

Local authorities issued a new advisory late on Sunday ordering an extension of lockdown curbs on monuments in and around Agra. The government order did not specify the duration of the lockdown for monuments that have been closed since March.

“In the interest of the public, it has been decided that opening monuments in Agra will not be advisable as of now”, the district authorities said in a notice published in Hindi.

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.

It was immediately not clear whether the government would scrap its plan to reopen other monuments across the country, such as New Delhi’s historic Red Fort.

Infections at record high

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. That pushed India’s overall tally to 673,165 cases, 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.

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,” a local district administration official said in Agra.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

South Africa golfer Branden Grace tests positive for COVID-19, withdraws from Barracuda Championship
Sports

South Africa golfer Branden Grace tests positive for COVID-19, withdraws from Barracuda Championship

Under PGA Tour guidelines, Grace has to self-isolate for 10 days and be without a fever for 24 hours before returning. The PGA Championship starts Thursday in San Francisco.

US Open 2020: Nick Kyrgios to skip Flushing Meadows Grand Slam due to coronavirus concerns
Sports

US Open 2020: Nick Kyrgios to skip Flushing Meadows Grand Slam due to coronavirus concerns

Kyrgios said in an Instagram post on Sunday that he had no problem with the United States Tennis Association proceeding with its plans to hold the tournament from 31 August to 13 September.

Uttar Pradesh reports 4,586 fresh coronavirus infections, 61 deaths in 24 hours; total cases cross 1 lakh
India

Uttar Pradesh reports 4,586 fresh coronavirus infections, 61 deaths in 24 hours; total cases cross 1 lakh

According to the state government, the number of active cases is now at 43,654, while 63,402 people have been discharged from hospitals after treatment