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After 20 years, view Taj by moonlight

November 09, 2004 09:59 IST
Last Updated: November 09, 2004 11:25 IST

The Uttar Pradesh government plans to open the world-famous Taj Mahal for public viewing on full moon nights from November 26 after fulfilling the conditions laid down by the Supreme Court.

"(The) Taj (Mahal) will be reopened for moonlight viewing after 20 years and it will attract substantial foreign tourists to the magnificent mausoleum," state Tourism Minister Kawkab Hameed told reporters in London on Monday night.

He said as the matter was before the Supreme Court, the Uttar Pradesh government had requested the apex court to permit it to open the mausoleum for five days a month.

"The court has agreed to it with the conditions that it will not be opened on Fridays in the month of Ramzan, the state will provide x-ray machines and set up computerised ticketing. We are trying to fulfil them," he said.

Claiming that there were as many as seven five star hotels in Agra for foreign tourists to stay, the minister said there has been a 25 per cent increase in the tourist traffic to the historic place during the last one year.

As part of tourism promotion, the state will organise a 'Ganga Utsav' on November 22.

A request has been made to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to release a Taj commemorative stamp before the end of this year, he added.

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