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Visitors take a selfie photograph in front of the Taj Mahal in Agra on January 3, 2018Dominique Faget/AFP/Getty Images

The Central government on Thursday issued a slew of directions for reopening of monuments and museums, protected by the Archaeological Survey of India, from July 6.

Only those monuments and museums which are in the non-containment zone will be open for visitors, according to the standard operating procedure.

Limited visitors

There is a cap on the number of visitors in select monuments. Taj Mahal will accept 2,500 visitors, while Qutub Minar and Red Fort will allow 1,500 visitors in two slots each.

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The 13th century Qutub Minar is pictured in New Delhi, India September 29, 2016 (representational image).Reuters file

Entry tickets shall be issued by e-mode only. No physical tickets will be issued. At the parking, cafeteria etc, only digital payment will be permitted.


"The visitors shall follow social distancing. The use of face cover and mask is mandatory. Entrance to have mandatory hand hygiene and thermal scanning provisions," it read.

There will be designated routes for entry and exit and movement within the monument. The ASI has the authority to restrict access to vulnerable and interior parts of any monument.

"Visitors shall be asked to stick to time limits inside the monument, as far as possible. The security staff inside the monument shall ensure that there is no crowding at any point inside the monument," the guidelines read.

Big no to group photography

It further added that group photography will not be allowed within the premises. All sound and light and film shows at monuments will also remain suspended till further order.

"Vehicles shall be parked in designated areas. The contractor who runs the parking area shall collect the parking fee through digital payment only. No physical cash transaction is allowed," it added.

Guides and photographs who have a valid license are allowed to work. No food and eatables are allowed inside the premises.

"The cafeteria and kiosk inside the monument shall only serve bottled water on digital payment and shall follow all the protocol. All the staff shall be well protected as per health protocol."

Last month, the Culture Ministry had reopened 820 monuments out of the over 3,000 ASI-maintained monuments.

(With inputs from IANS)