A group of students from Manipur were allegedly denied entry into the Taj Mahal and asked to produce proof of their nationality, reports the Indian Express. It was only after police intervention that the students were allowed entry. Now the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has ordered an inquiry after the students filed a written complaint alleging discrimination.
The students, who are from the Central Agricultural University in Imphal, went to the monument on Sunday as part of an all-India educational tour. However, they were stopped by guards who allegedly commented that they “resembled foreigners”, reports the Indian Express. The Taj Mahal offers entry tickets at different prices - Rs. 1,000 for foreign visitors and Rs. 40 for Indians. The Central Industrial Service Force (CISF) guards believed the students were only posing as Indian nationals to gain entry on cheaper tickets. The students even showed them their ID cards and a letter stating that they were on an all-India tour, but it didn’t work.
Some students were later allowed to enter but only after they produced their Aadhar Cards. The remaining made it inside the monument only after the police intervened.
The Archaeological Survey of India has ordered an inquiry and security staff has been asked to provide CCTV footage as well.