Hike in entry fee for Konark put on hold

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Konark: Keeping the law and order situation in mind, Puri district collector on Tuesday asked authorities of the Archaeological Ssurvey of India (ASI) to put the collection of revised entry fee for the world famous Sun Temple at Konark on hold.

A decision in this regard was taken at a meeting between the sub collector of the district, ASI officials and representatives of Konark Suraksha Samiti held on Tuesday evening.

Earlier in the day, a 10-member team of Konark Suraksha Samiti met district collector Arvind Agarwal and submitted a memorandum calling for the roll back of the entry fee hike.

Notably, the Central government had raised entry fees for 116 Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) managed monuments in India, including the Sun Temple at Konark, with effect from Friday.

The government had raised the entry fee three-fold to Rs 30 from Rs 10 for Indian nationals and two-fold for foreign visitors to Rs 500 from Rs 250.

A notification issued by the Central government said the move was aimed at raising money for improving facilities at these sites. The last time entry fees at ASI monuments was raised was way back in 2000, it had pointed out.

Besides, high-value tickets worth Rs 750 and Rs 300 were introduced for world heritage sites, including Sun Temple, for tourists who want to avail special facilities like free bottled water, Wi-Fi facilities, pictures and CDs. There would be separate queues for holders of high-value tickets to facilitate their hassle-free entry to the site, the notification said

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