Society

The Taj Mahal will be India's first monument with a breastfeeding room

The Taj Mahal, built as a monument to a woman who died in childbirth, is set to get a baby feeding room in a first for India, where conservative attitudes toward public breastfeeding mean nursing mothers are often shamed and told to cover up.

tajmahal

Vasant Kumar Swarnkar, a top official at the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) in Agra city — home to the Taj Mahal — said the baby feeding room would be set up by July to help the "millions of mothers who visit with their babies."

Public breastfeeding still carries a social stigma in India where mothers are expected to be covered head-to-toe.

Last year, mothers in the eastern city of Kolkata protested outside a mall where employees told a woman to nurse her baby in a toilet and mocked her complaint.

The Taj Mahal attracts up to 8 million visitors annually. Swarnkar said he has ordered two other historical monuments in Agra to set up similar feeding rooms.

The ASI said this was the first time it was providing such a facility at any of India's 3,600-plus monuments.

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