In order to protect archaeological artifacts, The Archaeological Survey of India has banned selfie sticks and various other photography equipment across 46 museums in the nation.
This ban has been imposed on site museums and includes the Taj Mahal, War Memorial Museum in Delhi, Archaeological museums at Konark, Hampi and other places in the country. The strict ban on selfie sticks has been imposed to protect the artifacts from damage.
Site museums are the museums located near the excavation site and house smaller, movable objects. These are often kept near the site they were found at to maintain their association with the remains. These objects generate a lot of academic and commercial interests and, hence, have to be protected.
Dr K. Lourdusamy, Director, ASI, revealed the reason why selfie sticks have been banned. He said,
Times are changing and at every site there are people with mobile phones and taking pictures freely. There are people even shooting inside the monuments, so a decision was taken by the ASI to put in place some restrictions.
Joining selfie sticks in the prohibition list are several heavy photography equipment. The new policy states that photography is permitted at museums free of cost, but the use of tripods, mono-pods and flashlight has been banned. Visitors can use the museum’s natural lighting for photography purposes.
Also, visitors who wish to use multiple-lenses, tripods, mono-pods and other heavy photography equipment for academic purposes must get prior permission from the authorities.
However, former culture secretary, Jawahar Sircar, opposed the idea and suggested that ASI must be open to technology and must not kill the spirit of visitors.