The Allahabad high court has received a petition before its Lucknow bench seeking it to issue directives to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to open 20 rooms inside the world’s wonder — Taj Mahal in Agra to find if Hindu idols and inscriptions are hidden there.
The plea has been filed by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) media in-charge of Ayodhya district, Dr Rajneesh, who will be represented by advocate Rudra Vikram Singh in court once the matter gets listed in the court for hearing, the Hindustan Times reported.
It has also sought a formation of a committee constituted by the state government for the purpose of examining these rooms and to look for evidence related with Hindu idols or scriptures there.
“There is an old controversy related to the Taj Mahal. Around 20 rooms in Taj Mahal are locked and no one is allowed to enter. It is believed that in these rooms there are idols of Hindu gods and scriptures. I have filed a petition in high court seeking directives to ASI to open these rooms to ascertain facts. There is no harm in opening these rooms and setting to rest all controversies,” said the BJP leader.
In 2015, six lawyers filed cases claiming that the Taj Mahal was originally a Shiva shrine. In 2017, BJP leader Vinay Katiyar repeated the claim and asked UP CM Yogi Adityanath to travel to the monument to look at the Hindu sings inside. In January 2019, BJP leader Anant Kumar Hegde also claimed that Taj Mahal was not built by Shah Jahan but rather bought by him from King Jayasimha.
Such claims have been put to rest not just by historians but also by the Archeological Survey of India which has time and again refuted such revisionist interpretations of Taj Mahal’s history and dismissed claims to ownership.
In February 2018, the ASI filed an affidavit in an Agra court, stating that the Taj Mahal was indeed built as a tomb by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan who intended it to be a tomb and shrine for his Mumtaz Mahal.