Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Taj Mahal vs. Tejo Mahalay - My Views

I've heard this quite a few times. But the article that I've posted in my previous blog is by far the most informative and rationally written. In most cases people who try to refute some well accepted theory tends to become little irrational and prejudiced because they often don't have enough facts to back them. They even tend to be vindictive and write as if they are victimized. Yes, I do accept that writing against some well known misconception is like fighting for a cause, fighting for a truth that was wrongly suppressed. But that's doesn't mean that the crusaders fighting for a cause should themselves feel victimized. Crusaders are like emancipators. But such seldom happens. A very good example is the case of the Indian origin of Aryans. Most writers and researchers in this area lack the true spirit of a research - they spend more energy in finding faults in other writers who don't accept the Indian homeland theory instead of putting their own facts and figures correctly.
But contrary to all these, this particular article is quite well written with proper references, which I assume are correct. There are cases where historians fraudulently concoct references to their benefit - this again happens for people who tend to bring out some suppressed truth.
My take of this particular issue is that - it's very likely that the original structure for Taj Mahal might have existed as a Hindu Temple long before the time of Shahjahan and Mumtaj but that doesn't mean that the structure that draws the most visitors in India should be suddenly thrashed. Irrespective of its origin there's no doubt that it stands as a wonderful piece of art that has caught the fancy of so many visitors in India.
At the same time it's indeed important to find the real facts. If it's claimed that some rooms in Taj Mahal have been always locked since the time of Shahjahan then they should be opened - not to disregard the present Taj Mahal, but to find the facts correctly. If there are indeed broken idols of Shiva they should be restored with all respect to new temples. Going back to Bankim Chandra's simple words - if you're worse why can't I be better? There's no doubt that the Mughals broke many temples and reused them as palaces or tombs, but that doesn't man that we again do the same mistakes that they'd committed centuries back.
Also something keeps me wondering. After the Mughals the Marathas setup the biggest Hindu Empire after the Guptas. It was not from the Mughals, but the Marathas, that the British took bulk of India. The Mughals were just titular heads at least for fifty years till the beginning of nineteenth century and this map shows the extent of Maratha Empire in 1760. There's no doubt that the Marathas were one of the most fiercest Hindu people who created one of the greatest Hindu Empires in India. If the Shiva Temple was so important then why didn't the Maratha's restore it at the site of Taj Mahal? I won't have been happy at all if they had done that - because then the Marathas would have been equally criminal like the Mughals. Devastating or breaking something and then establishing something new on top of it is not a good culture.
So my take is that - yes, I'd like to know what it was in the past, but I don't want to politicize this. Taj looks great and earns revenue for us and we should be happy to have the structure in India. Irrespective of the past, it still remains a piece of art.

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