India to reopen Taj Mahal with social distancing, masks | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, July 06, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 02:17 AM, July 06, 2020

India to reopen Taj Mahal with social distancing, masks

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 today 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. 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. Yesterday, 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.

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