Agra Mayor Anjula Singh Mahaur Sunday said both the central and Uttar Pradesh governments were not interested in promoting tourism. Her remarks come close on the heels of her proposed trip to France for the release of the most expensive coin on the Taj Mahal being shot down.
The French coin depicting the Taj would be the most expensive to be released by the Paris mint. It will weigh around 1 kg and will carry 50 diamonds. It is priced at $140,000.
"This highly prestigious and unique event Nov 17 would have been a great opportunity to promote tourism, but the officials concerned are not interested and have taken no interest in encashing this wonderful moment of glory for Agra," Mahaur told IANS Sunday.
"The French mint CEO specially sent his representative to Agra to invite me and I was keen to go there, but there has been no support from any quarter," said the mayor.
The design of the coin was shown to her and she approved it for minting. A French mint official was in Agra last week to show her a replica of the coin.
A silver replica of the coin costing around Rs.3,000 would be available for sale in Agra.
"In 2007, for attending an event in Lisbon (Portugal) where the Taj Mahal was voted number one wonder of the world, my husband spent his hard earned money to sponsor my trip," the mayor said.
The coin's release in Paris was planned ahead of French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife Carla Bruni's visit to India early December. The two are likely to visit Agra Dec 5.
This will be the 40th international coin depicting the Taj.