Shiv Chalisa at Taj Mahal: Vinay Katiyar draws Opposition's flak
Congress leaders on Wednesday lashed out at BJP MP Vinay Katiyar for justifying chanting of 'Shiv Chalisa' at the Taj Mahal by some right wihg groups on the grounds that the Taj Mahal was originally a Shiva Temple.
Members of Rashtra Swabhimaan Dal (RSD) and Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV) were on Monday detained, and later released, for chanting 'Shiv Chalisa' on the premises of the Taj Mahal. Supporting this, Katiyar had told the media that youths chanting Shiv Chalisa should not be condemned as Taj mahal was once a Shiva Temple.
""BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party), Bajrang Dal, RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh), their work is to say something to get in limelight. I think this is cheapness," Congress leader Raj Babbar told news agency ANI.
Another Congress leader P L Punia said that there was need to comment on Katiyar's remark.
"Taj Mahal is not only our identity in India, but all around the world. India is proud of Taj Mahal. There is no need to interfere with its name," Punia added.
Several BJP leaders have in the past gone on to state that the Taj Mahal was in reality a temple. A petition in the Supreme Court had sought to declare the Taj as a temple, but it was struck down.
Historian P N Oak had written a book, Taj Mahal a true story, in which he argues that it was a hindu temple. Some believe that the term Taj Mahal is a corrupt form of the sanskrit term Tejo Mahalay.
Last week, BJP MLA Sangeet Som had stirred a controversy by saying that the Taj Mahal was built by traitors and that it was blot on Indian history.