India’s Supreme Court Wants Taj Mahal Shut Down If Not Restored To Actual Color
India’s Supreme Court is warning the government in Uttar Pradesh that the Taj Mahal might be closed if the monument isn’t restored to the way it looked during its glory days.
The two-judge committee chided authorities on their “lethargy” and “apathy” about maintaining the condition of the UNESCO Heritage Site, noting that its once ivory-white marble walls had turned yellow and brown from insect droppings and pollution, according to The Indian Express newspaper.
“Uttar Pradesh [government] is not bothered,” the judges said regrettably. “No action plan or vision document has come yet. Either you demolish it or you restore it.”
They also likened the magnificent landmark to the Eiffel Tower, declaring that in its pristine state, the Taj Mahal would be “more beautiful” than the Parisian icon; but the state’s negligence has drastically hurt India’s tourism industry.
The Supreme Court requested that the state’s authorities turn to foreign expertise to fix the Taj Mahal’s discolored and crumbling areas.
A team at the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpu is reportedly investigating the source of pollution in the area, but will only be able to present a concrete answer after four months of analysis.
The Supreme Court will run spot checks on the landmark’s status on a daily basis beginning 31 July.
The Taj Mahal, which translates to “Crown of the Palace,” was commissioned by Persian emperor Shah Jahan in 1631 to be built in honor of his wife Mumtaz Mahal, who passed away after giving birth to their 14th child.