I know there are many controversy theories that people come out with. But this one is kind of special – in that it challenges a world famous fable/story. Now we all have been fed the Shahjahan-Mumtaz story. It used to fascinate me no end that how was Mumtaz distorted to Taj? I mean if at all it should have been Taz! Also, I really do not have much faith the “glorious” accounts of the Mughals that we have been fed.. they were distorted by the British and India’s own communist historians!
I just got this email from my sister which describes this Taj Mahal alternative story. Its doing its rounds on the net and I just wanted to chronicle it here.. and maybe one day, be able to do enough research myself to comment on it personally. Until then..please keep it in your mind..
No one has ever challenged it except Prof. P. N. Oak, who believes the
whole world has been duped. In his book Taj Mahal: The True Story, Oak says
the Taj Mahal is not Queen Mumtaz’s tomb but an ancient Hindu temple palace of
Lord Shiva (then known as Tejo Mahalaya ) . In the course of his research O
ak discovered that the Shiva temple palace was usurped by Shah Jahan from
then Maharaja of Jaipur, Jai Singh. In his own court chronicle,
Badshahnama, Shah Jahan admits that an exceptionally beautiful grand mansion in Agra
was taken from Jai SIngh for Mumtaz’s burial . The ex-Maharaja of Jaipur
still retains in his secret collection two orders from Shah Jahan for
surrendering the Taj building. Using captured temples and mansions, as a
burial place for dead courtiers and royalty was a common practice among Muslim rulers.
For example, Humayun,Akbar, Etmud-ud-Daula and Safdarjung are all buried
in such mansions. Oak’s inquiries began with the name of Taj Mahal. He says the term
” Mahal ” has never been used for a building in any Muslim countries from
Afghanisthan to Algeria. “The unusual explanation that the term Taj
Mahal derives from Mumtaz Mahal was illogical in atleast two respects.
Firstly, her name was never Mumtaz Mahal but Mumtaz-ul-Zamani,” he writes.
Secondly, one cannot omit the first three letters ‘Mum’ from a woman’s
name to derive the remainder as the name for the building.”Taj Mahal, he
claims, is a corrupt version of Tejo Mahalaya, or Lord Shiva’s Palace . Oak
also says the love story of Mumtaz and Shah Jahan is a fairy tale created
by court sycophants, blundering historians and sloppy archaeologists . Not a
single royal chronicle of Shah Jahan’s time corroborates the love story.
Furthermore, Oak cites several documents suggesting the Taj Mahal predates
Shah Jahan’s era, and was a temple dedicated to Shiva, worshipped by
Rajputs of Agra city. For example, Prof. Marvin Miller of New York took a
samples from the riverside doorway of the Taj. Carbon dating tests revealed
that the door was 300 years older than Shah Jahan. European traveler Johan
Albert Mandelslo,who visited Agra in 1638 (only seven years after Mumtaz’s
death), describes the life of the cit y in his memoirs. But he makes no
reference to the Taj Mahal being built. The writings of Peter Mundy, an
English visitor to Agra within a year of Mumtaz’s death, also suggest the
Taj was a noteworthy building well before Shah Jahan’s time.
Prof. Oak points out a number of design and architectural inconsistencies
that support the belief of the Taj Mahal being a typical Hindu temple
than a mausoleum. Many rooms in the Taj ! Mahal have remained sealed
since Shah Jahan’s time and are still inaccessible to the public. Oak
asserts they contain a headless statue of Lord Shiva and other objects
commonly used for worship rituals in Hindu temples . Fearing political
backlash, Indira Gandhi’s government tried to have Prof. Oak’s book
withdrawn from the bookstores, and threatened the Indian publisher of the
first edition dire consequences . There is only one way to discredit or
validate Oak’s research.
The current government should open the sealed rooms of the Taj Mahal under
U.N. supervision, and let international experts investigate.
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