AGRA: A woman tourist from Thailand was allegedly harassed by a group of photographers at Taj Mahal on Tuesday after she refused to hire them for clicking pictures.
In a written complaint submitted to the Archaeological Survey of India ( ASI ) officials, the woman tourist, identified as May Mayyanan Suwannathrai , said that the photographers unnecessary bothered her and when she refused to hire them, they misbehaved with her.
“When our guide tried to intervene, they allegedly fought with him too,” she said. The tourist urged the ASI officials to stop such activities and hoped that such treatment will not be meted out to other tourists.
Mayyanan, who was wearing an Indian attire, told media persons that initially only one photographer had approached her outside the monument but she politely refused his service as she was carrying her own camera. She said another photographer approached her inside the Taj Mahal and she again declined his services.
“Later, the photographer started fighting with our tour guide,” she said, claimed that a few others also joined him.
Instead of addressing the issue, the ASI staff at the Taj Mahal dismisses the incident and called it “routine”.
President of Tour Guides’ Association Shamshuddin Khan also said, “Our country’s image gets tarnished due to such incidents but no one is bothered about it. The ASI officials should make booths for photographers and tour guides. Whosoever is interested to hire them can approach those booths and take their services.”
When contacted, superintending archaeologist, ASI ( Agra circle), Vasant Swarnkar said that the issue had come to his notice and he will ensure that such kind of incidents aren’t repeated.