Wednesday, May 23, 2018 | Last Update : 06:21 AM IST
A proposal has now been submitted to the state government for setting up tourist police stations in these areas
Lucknow: Tourist guides in Agra now have a new task to do. They will, at the very outset, warn their foreign guests not to allow unknown people to take selfies with them. The local officials in Agra are now asking the tourist guides to warn all foreign guests to deal firmly with selfie-seekers. This decision comes close on the heels of the attack on a Swiss couple in Fatehpur Sikri. The couple was attacked after they reportedly did not respond to the request for a selfie made by a group of boys.
Arif Mohammad, a tourist guide in Agra, said, “We have been asked to tell the foreign guests not to encourage people to come close and take selfies. As guides, it is our duty to safeguard the interests of our guests and also take care of their security.”
He said more than the locals, it is Indian tourists who seek selfies with foreigners. “This is the most common complaint from all our foreign clients. It’s not just in Agra or UP, they face the same situation all over the country. Every day, I help many tourists avoid such people who want pictures with them. Especially tourists, who explore a place on their own, face this problem,” he explained.
Ravi Bhushan Pandey, SHO, tourist police station, Tajganj, Agra, said, “There are two categories of people who bother foreign tourists... those who live in the outskirts of the city or who have hardly seen foreigners. They are attracted to the white-skinned foreign tourists and feel happy getting a picture clicked with them. The other category is those who have a criminal mindset. They just want to create problems. At the Taj Mahal, we have a tourist police station where our plainclothes personnel take care of tourists. If we see groups of foreigner girls and teenagers, we accompany them while they are visiting the Taj and make sure they reach their buses safely,” he said.
However in places like Fatehpur Sikri and Itmad-ud-Daulah, which stretch across vast areas and are located on the outskirts of the city, there is no police station dedicated to tourists. A proposal has now been submitted to the state government for setting up tourist police stations in these areas.
Brij Bhushan, deputy commandant, CISF, Agra, said, “Most of these cases are not reported to the police. We hardly get one case reported in a month, that too when something grave happens. We have positioned our personnel in plain clothes to take care of the security.”