Taj Mahal not included in Uttar Pradesh tourism booklet
The Taj Mahal has not been included in a tourism booklet for Uttar Pradesh - despite attracting thousands of visitors from across the globe and being among the Seven Wonders of the World.
The booklet was published by the UP tourism department and was released on World Tourism Day.
According to News18.com, the Uttar Pradesh government said after publication that it would include a picture of the Taj Mahal in the booklet.
The site explains that Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had said earlier this year that, according to him, the Ramayana and Bhagwad Gita represent the Indian culture and not the Taj Mahal.
The booklet instead talks about the Ganga Aarti of Varanasi, Gorakhpur's Gorakh Peeth, Mathura-Vrindavan, Ayodhya and all major religious places in the state, while the back cover has the photos of Fatehpur Sikri and other tourist destinations.
The Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi has since blasted the state chief minister Adityanath over the omission.
Leaders of other Opposition parties also criticised the omission of the Taj Mahal.
Brinda Karat, of the CPM, said: "I believe that for people all over the world, one of the major spots for tourists is the Taj Mahal.
"It also supports the economy of UP. This is truly made in India. Therefore, people will only laugh at him and his complete ignorance of history and importance of preserving the beauty of Taj Mahal."
According to the Times of India, after the Opposition's criticism, UP's tourism ministry issued a press release stating that the booklet wasn't meant to be a publication of the state's tourist attractions.
Rather, the ministry said, the booklet was "meant to highlight the UP government's ongoing and future plans in the tourism sector and was published on the completion of six months of the Yogi government".