The monuments at Sanchi.
The monuments at Sanchi.

Bhopal: All Archaeological Survey of India-protected monuments, sites and museums in the state will remain closed till May 15 due to the surge in the number of Covid-19 cases.

An order to this effect was issued by the ASI and it was tweeted by culture minister Prahlad Patel on Thursday evening. Superintending archaeologist, ASI, Bhopal Circle, Piyush Bhatt told Free Press that it had been decided to close all ASI-protected monuments, sites and museums with immediate effect till May 15, or until further orders, due to the surge in the number of corona cases in the state, as well as in the country.

“We got an official order regarding this and we’ve implemented it from Friday,” Bhat added. There are 291 monuments and the five museums under ASI in the state. Out of 291 monuments, 60 are living monuments. The Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (IGRMS), Bhopal, will also be closed until further orders.

Last year, too, all monuments and sites maintained by the ASI were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic on March 17. They reopened in July with corona-protection protocols, such as mandatory wearing of masks, a cap on the number of visitors and social distancing.

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