Pune: Due to an increase in Covid-19 cases, the forest department on Monday decided to close Sinhagad fort for tourists. The Pune rural police have also requested for the closure of 30 other tourists that also includes Lonavala.Also Read - COVID Positive Man In Kolkata Donates Body For Medical Research On Infection

Pune division’s senior forest department official said to Times of India,” Thousands from the city and other areas visit the historic fort daily. Following social distancing norms is not possible in weekends because over 10,000 people go there each day. Thus, we had to close it on Monday.” Also Read - International Flights: Singapore Airlines Begins Flight Operations From India Through VTL: Check Full Schedule Here

“Some famous forts such as Rajgad, Shivneri and Lohegad, among others, need to be closed for trekking and camping as a large number of people go there. Besides, tourist spots in Lonavala, Junnar and other tehsils also should be closed to contain the spread of coronavirus,” said Abhinav Deshmukh, Rural Superintendent of Police to TOI. Also Read - Delhi Metro Services To Resume As Per Regular Weekend Schedule On All Lines From Today

According to the Times of India report, Deshmukh said that the district administration was empowered to issue the order for this issue. However, the officials did not issue any direction till 9 PM on Monday.

Sachin Bagde, a hotel owner at Malavli town near Lonavala, talked about how this would have a major impact on their business if the tourist spots are closed. Bagde said to news portal that their business was slowly getting on the track. The authorities should allow complete vaccinated people to visit them.

“We rely on the trekking-related business here. If the fort is closed, we do not open the hotel. During the two waves, we had to close the hotel for nine months,” said Ashok Pathare, to a news portal. Pathare was a hotel owner from Tungi village. Tungi was a major destination for trekking.