The Red Fort in Delhi has been shut for public visitors from January 27 to January 31, 2021, as per an order passed by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). The Red Fort stayed shut from January 22 to January 26 due to the Republic Day celebrations. It had to be reopened on January 27, but it did not happen.
Sources told the TOI that the decision to extend the closure of the monument is due to the farmer’s protests that occurred in the premises on January 26. Apparently, the ASI has decided to examine the damage incurred by the fort. After the violence that erupted in the Red Fort premises on January 26, the ASI has taken a decision to keep the gates shut to take stock of the damages. Earlier on Wednesday, culture and tourism minister Prahlad Patel visited the site and has sought a report on the incident from the ASI. The minister had on Tuesday condemned the actions of the protesting farmers who entered the Red Fort and said it violated the symbol of dignity of India’s democracy. While it is not clear if the iconic structure was damaged in any way, during the minister’s tour one could see vandalised metal detector gate and ticket counter, and broken shards of glass at the premises of the Red Fort.
There are 173 monuments in Delhi protected under the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). It includes UNESCO World Heritage Sites — Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb and Qutub Minar. The construction of Red Fort was commissioned by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, when he decided to shift his capital from Agra to Delhi in the year 1638. The interiors of this palace were given a high level of ornamentation.