Agra: This Christmas onwards you won't have to stand in long queues to buy tickets to enter Taj Mahal as the Archaeological Survey of India is launching the online booking of entry tickets facility.
"All arrangements have been made and our systems are in place. The trial will begin December 25. It has taken us a long time to work on this project which will change the image of the ASI," Superintending Archaeologist, Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), N K Pathak said.
The Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) will be the service provider of the e-ticketing facility, in collaboration with the National Institute of Smart Governance, he said.
After one month trial of the e-ticketing facility at the Taj, the ASI would extend the similar facility to other monuments, managed by it.
ASI officials said the e-tickets will have security features including bar code, and bar code scanners would be installed at the entry gates.
The ASI is training its staffs for effective and efficient use of the facility, which is likely to put an end to the long queues at the ticket counters.
Tourists had to stand for long hours in queues to buy entry tickets.
Tourism circles in Agra have welcomed ASI's initiative saying the facility would help check resale of entry tickets and fake tickets by unscrupulous elements.
It is said that the ensuing online facility would also help the ASI in managing the number of visitors.