Rupee pushes out dollar at the Taj Mahal

Updated on Nov 19, 2007 04:50 PM IST

According to a directive of the tourism ministry, foreign tourists will now have to pay in Indian rupees instead of US dollars to gain entry to the Taj.

HT Image
HT Image
IANS | By, Agra

Foreign tourists will now have to pay in Indian rupees instead of US dollars to gain entry to the Taj Mahal, according to a tourism ministry directive.

The decision will also be applicable at 120 other monuments maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) across India.

The ruling follows concerns over falling revenues from overseas tourists on the back of a weakening dollar against the rupee. The rupee has appreciated more than 12 per cent against the dollar in the past six months.

An ASI official said the decision was compatible with international practices and will come into force within a week.

"They (foreign tourists) can now pay Rs 250," he said.

The ministry directive is binding only on the ASI. How the Agra Development Authority (ADA), which also collects a charge from foreign tourists, reacts to the change is unclear.

Overseas visitors have to buy two tickets while entering protected monuments in Agra, one issued by ASI and the other by ADA, which collects a toll tax of Rs 500 per foreign visitor.

The government had fixed $5 as entrance fee for overseas tourists for world heritage sites like the Taj when the dollar was worth about Rs 50.

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