New Delhi: A bunch of lawyers from Agra have filed a lawsuit claiming that the world famous 'monument of love' Taj Mahal, was originally a Shiva temple and it's ownership be transferred to Hindus.
The plea made by six lawyers regarding the ownership of 17th century Mughal monument, was moved to the additional district and sessions judge (XIV) on Saturday last week and the Ministry of Culture has been given time till August 10 to file their reply, reports said.
Speaking to the Times of India, lawyer of the plaintiff Rajesh Kulshreshtra said, "After the case was transferred, the court of ADJ-XIV Niranjan Chandra Pandey asked defendant-II (Ministry of culture) to file their reply by August 10 against the claim made by a group of lawyers. Once all the defendant parties file their response, we will file our counter response in the court."
Earlier, the Archaeological Survey of India, defendant-I, had dismissed the lawyers' claim that Taj Mahal is a Shiva temple.
The lawyers claim that there was substantial evidence to prove that the Taj Mahal was a Shiva temple, dedicated to Lord Agreshwar Mahadev. The suit demands that the monument's ownership be transferred to Hindus and Muslims be restrained from offering prayers there.
Interestingly, the lawyers have made Lord Agreshwar Mahadev a party in their suit to claim the ownership of Taj Mahal.
It can be noted that last year in December, UP BJP chief Laxmikant Bajpai too had mentioned that Taj was a part of an ancient temple.
Bajpai claimed that there were documents to prove that Mughal emperor Shah Jahan "purchased a part of Tejo Mahalaya temple's land from Raja Jai Singh".
Bajpai's remarks were in response to Azam Khan's demand that Taj Mahal be handed over to UP Waqf Board.