New Delhi, Aug 31: The historic Qutub Minar took on a new form on Saturday evening, when more than 350 LED lights illuminated the majestic monument, making it sparkle like a precious gem.
The first ever architectural LED illumination was inaugurated by Union Minister of State for Culture and Tourism (Independent Charge) Prahalad Singh Patel, here. Speaking on the occasion, Mr Patel said the 12th century monument is a true reflection of India's culture and contains history of several eras. The bottom to top illumination of this complex will highlight the true beauty of its elements.
The systematic development of Qutub complex will not only increase footfall of visitors, but also benefit the communities around it, he added.
Highlighting the importance of public facilitation at such monuments, the Culture Minister said, ''Recently, we have setup a Baby feeding Centre at the Taj Mahal, Agra and many such feeding centres will also be set up in all ASI protected UNESCO world heritage sites.
''Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set the goal of doubling foreign and domestic tourists in the next five years. In order to achieve this goal, we must change the global perception about our country to promote tourism,'' he explained.
To highlight the archaeological magnificence of the country's historical monuments, the Archaeological Survey of India has taken up the project to illuminate important monuments of Delhi. Earlier, the illumination of Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, PuranaQila and Safdarjung Tomb has already been completed. Tughlaqabad Fort is also expected to be illuminated in the near future, said the Minister.
Continuing its endeavour to promote India's glorious culture and Heritage, the ASI, under the Union Ministry of Culture, is committed to showcase India’s cultural vibrancy to the entire world. The move to illuminate the historic monuments will aim to showcase monuments during late evenings, thereby enhancing the visitor experience, he added.
As part of the effort to increase footfall in the evening, timings for public entry at Red Fort, Safdarjung Tomb and Humayun’s Tomb have also been extended to 2100 hrs. Qutub Minar, however, is already open till 2200 hrs.
Also, in a new facility for visitor convenience, now the public can jump the queue at Qutub Minar and purchase a ticket for the monument at a discounted rate just by scanning the QR code through their mobile camera.
To highlight the architectural beauty including arches and minarets of the Qutub Minar, a total of 358 technologically advanced LED lights have been used, which will consume 62 per cent less electricity than conventional light fixtures. Warm lights will highlight the architectural features on the monument’s facade.
Apart from the minaret, the pathways and smaller structures around the Qutub Minar have also been lit. The new illumination comprises lighting that accentuates the silhouette of the monument with the interplay of light and shade. The duration of illumination will be from 1900 hrs to 2300 hrs daily, with a monthly cost of Rs 16,615, which comes out merely to Rs 1,99,388 for a year, he said.
Qutub Minar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of those historical monuments, which attracts thousands of tourists every year and is the proud jewel in Delhi's history. (UNI)