ASI plans to upgrade tourist facilities
Shivani Chaturvedi | March 16, 2010
Much like the rest of Delhi, 46 monuments across the city are being dressed up and made more tourist friendly ahead of the Commonwealth Games. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has chalked out a plan to upgrade facilities, for parking for instance, around these tourist attractions, besides improving landscaping and illumination.
KK Muhammed, ASI's superintending archaeologist for Delhi circle, said a new parking lot would come up on the southern side of Red Fort within a month. This will be first parking facility around Red Fort. In case of Qutub Minar, which does have a small parking space on its eastern side, the facility will be extended.
Repair of pathways in monuments across the city has been held up on the directives of the Supreme Court which had asked the ASI to submit a comprehensive conservation plan following the filing of a public interest litigation. Muhammed, however, told GovernanceNow that the plan was ready and that work would start soon.
Besides that, the ASI plans to construct new toilets inside 10 monuments, including Humayun Tomb, Purana Quila, Safdarjung Tomb and Feroz Shah Kotla.
The agency plans to complete all renovation works by August.
A little effort would go a long way, say tourists. “Why don’t the authorities repair the pathways? It needs just a little concern and attention,” says Dudley D-Cruz, a tourist from London, at Red Fort. D-Cruz’s Indian friends – Mohan Singh, Dalip Singh and Bhupinder – add that if something gets broken inside the monument premises, it stays broken for long.
Monica and Arne Naevra from Norway, Tom Lambeth from USA, Anders Bloom and Anita Bloom from Sweden, all lament the lack of proper toilet facilities. “This is such a basic requirement,” is a common refrain among tourists.
Domestic tourists feel no less harried. Sudarshan Singh from Moga in Punjab who came along with his daughter Ramandeep, said, “In order to come to Lal Quila, we had to leave our taxi near the gurudwara in Chandni Chowk as there is no proper parking space near the monument.”
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