Maha: District authorities should take steps to keep world heritage tag given to Ajanta, Ellora caves intact: ASI official

NewsDrum Desk
25 Nov 2022

Aurangabad, Nov 25 (PTI) The district authorities and the police should initiate steps to ensure that the world heritage tag given to Ajanta and Ellora Caves in Maharashtra's Aurangabad remains intact, an official of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) said on Friday.

Superintendent archaeologist Milan Kumar Chauley made the statement during a lecture on 'Monuments and Legacy' organised at Mahatma Gandhi University to mark the death anniversary of the state's first chief minister Yashwantrao Chavan.

Chauley spoke about issues-related to monuments in 13 districts of Maharashtra.

"Vendors enter the campus of Ellora Caves and trouble visitors. While any commercial activity in the premises of a monument is an offence, we cannot act against these people as the ASI does not have the power to do so," Chauley said.

The district administration and the police need to crack down on such activities and ensure that the world heritage tag given to these monuments remains intact, he said.

"I have taken up the issue with the concerned authorities in the district. But the action is awaited," the official said.

Chauley further said that the tourist centre at Ajanta Caves needs to be opened immediately so that visitors can get access to the replicas of paintings from the cave complex and footfall at the actual site can be controlled.

"When the four caves were fumigated last year, cockroaches and insects like silver fish were destroying the paintings," the official said.

The ASI has undertaken various initiatives to provide facilities to visitors, he said.

A new pathway is being built and landscaping is being done at Ellora Caves and Bibi Ka Maqbara. The number of electric vehicles will be increased and four vehicles will be reserved for physically challenged persons and foreign tourists at Ellora, the official said. PTI AW ARU ARU

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