India’s tourism industry has been badly affected due to ongoing unrest and tensions in India.
Tourists are warned to refrain from visiting Agra due to protests and clashes organised amid the controversial citizenship law.
At least seven countries have released travel warnings to their people about traveling in India.
Countries including the Uk, Israel, Singapore, Russia, Taiwan, and Canada have released warnings. Travel advisories have cautioned people to either avoid visiting India or to remain alert when going to regions where protests are taking place.
Over 200,000 domestic and international tourists have canceled or postponed their visit to the Taj Mahal, Agra.
A group of European tourists has also decided to cut short their 20-days visit.
Dave Millikin, a retired banker residing near London, told the international news agency, “We are all retired folks. For us, travel has to be slow and relaxing. The newspaper headlines have led to a sense of concern and we will leave sooner than we had planned.”
Dinesh Kumar, a police inspector managing a special tourist police station near Taj Mahal, has reported, “There has been a 60 percent decline in visitor footfalls in December this year [compared to last year]”
“Indian and foreign tourists have been calling our control rooms to check security. We assure the protection, but many still decide to stay away.”
Taj Mahal is a historic place and is one of the most attractive sites for tourism. Nearly 6.5 million tours visit the Taj Mahal every year, over $14m money is made annually.
A foreign tourist has to pay 1,100 Indian rupees to go to the grounds whereas tourists from neighbor countries avail discounts.
Given that mobile services have been abandoned in Agra due to ongoing protests.
Sandeep Arora, President of the Agra Tourism Development Foundation, has said, “Blocking the internet has affected travel and tourism in Agra by about 50 to 60 percent. “
Managers of luxury hotels and guest houses have complained that last-minute cancellations of the reservations have further affected businesses and the economic growth of the country.