Fact Check: Did govt order excavation at iconic Qutub Minar?
New Delhi, May 22: Amid the Gyanvapi mosque row, reports were rife that the government has ordered the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to conduct excavation in the Qutub Minar complex in Delhi. An iconography of idols at the Qutub Minar complex has also been ordered, media reports had said.
However, putting an end to the speculations, Union Minister of Culture G Kishan Reddy said, on Sunday, that no survey is to take place in the Delhi-based architectural marvel.
"No discussion on the survey is taking place," the Minister said.
The Qutub Minar controversy, came to the fore after ASI's ex-regional director Dharamveer Sharma claimed that the Qutub Minar was constructed by Hindu emperor Raja Vikramaditya and not by Qutb al-Din Aibak, to study the direction of the sun.
Two weeks ago, members of a right-wing group recited the Hanuman Chalisa outside the Qutub Minar complex and staged a protest demanding that the iconic monument be renamed 'Vishnu Stambha'. At least 30 demonstrators were detained. "They were detained because they cannot protest in the middle of the road causing traffic snarls, thereby creating inconvenience for commuters," a police official said.
International working president of United Hindu Front, Bhagwan Goyal, alleged that the Qutub Minar is the 'Vishnu Stambha', which was built by the "great king Vikramaditya".
"But later, Qutubuddin Aibak claimed credit for it. There were 27 temples in the complex and those were destroyed by Aibak. Proof of all this is available as people can find idols of Hindu gods kept in the Qutub Minar complex. Our demand is that Qutub Minar should be called as Vishnu Stambha," he told PTI.
The protestors chanted 'Jai Shri Ram', recited the Hanuman Chalisa and displayed placards reading 'Qutub Minar should be called Vishnu Stambha', after the Hindu God Vishnu.
Centre orders excavation of Qutub Minar complex
No discussion the survey has taken place.