BJP MP Vinay Katiyar demands to Rename Taj Mahal as ‘Taj Mandir’

AYODHYA: The row over Taj Mahal is taking new twists and turns every moment, and now with BJP leader Vinay Katiyar has asked the authorities to rename the iconic historic monument located in Agra as Taj Mandir.

The firebrand BJP MP on Tuesday said that nothing is wrong in it as the whole compound belongs to Lord Shiva.

It was a temple earlier, Katiyar added.

Katiyar made these remarks after some activists belonging to Hindu outfit Hindu Yuva Vahini were arrested for reciting ‘Shiv Chalisa’ inside the premises of the Taj Mahal on Monday.

The incident triggered tension and the activists were formally arrested by the local police. They were released only after they submitted a written apology.

The MP had last week claimed that the Mughal mausoleum was actually a Hindu temple.

Kaityar said that the Taj Mahal was known as ‘Tejo Mahal’ and had a shivling, which was later removed from the monument.

“It was Tejo Mahal, Lord Shiva’s temple, where Shahjahan buried his wife and turned it into a mausoleum,” Katiyar, who had been in the forefront of the Ram temple movement of Ayodhya, had claimed.

“It was constructed by Hindu kings, the rooms and carvings there prove that it was a Hindu monument… it has also been termed as one by historian PN Oak,” he claimed.

The firebrand BJP lawmaker said like a Shiva temple, water drips from the ceiling in the Taj Mahal, which is not a case in any mausoleum anywhere and is like that only on a Shivlinga.

“It was a famous monument and was grabbed by Shahjahan,” Katiyar said.

“It was our temple but was made a mausoleum as they had more power. But it is a grand monument and national heritage… people come to see it and so it should be kept safe and secure,” he said.

Last week, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath gave a clear snub to his BJP colleague and MLA Sangeet Som for stirring the Taj Mahal controversy, stating that “it does not matter who built it and for what reason; it was built by blood and sweat of Indian labourers”.

Som had courted controversy on Sunday, stating that the iconic Taj Mahal was built by traitors and hence, cannot be included in the Indian history.

Taj Mahal was also recently omitted from the UP Government’s Tourism Booklet. However, the Taj Mahal later found a place of pride in the 2018 calender brought out by the Uttar Pradesh government.

With ANI inputs