Mughal historian: Park can endanger Taj Mahal

Historians in the News

The Archaeological Survey of India - has created a park between the main Taj Mahal structure and the Yamuna river to beautify the complex but a prominent Mughal historian says it can endanger the 17th century monument.

D.D. Dayalan, the ASI chief in Agra, says: 'We have beautified the riverfront which was earlier an eyesore, with litter thrown all around. Visitors were always throwing all kinds of things from the main platform of the Taj.'

But noted historian Prof R. Nath, who has at least 60 books on Mughal history and architecture to his credit, disputes the ASI's claim.

'It has all the potential to endanger the heritage monument. The ASI has created an artificial park that did not exist in the original Taj complex plan. The Yamuna river has been pushed a good distance away, around 100 feet,' Nath told IANS.

Past records and documents show the river flowing close by, even touching the rear wall of the structure. Most conservationists agree that the river should be full of water and touch the foundation on which stands the Taj Mahal.

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