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Would Taj Mahal's splendor and glory meet the fate similar to the traumatic demolition of Babri Masjid?

By Adv Masood Peshimam
Former American President Bill Clinton while sighting the Taj Mahal erupted in joy and amazingly said that he has classified the world into two categories as those who have seen Taj Mahal and those who have not seen Taj Mahal. This was the statement of the most powerful President of the most powerful nation. Such was the statement of a person whose country has made the tremendous strides in science and technology.
Notwithstanding the wealth of charm and beauty of Taj Mahal, there are forces in our country who are not prepared to tolerate any accomplishment or marvel associated with Muslims, sensing a semblance of slavery and treachery.
Attuned to this tendency came the statement of BJP leader Sangeet Som, known for his inflammatory speeches and accused of instigating the deadly Muzaffarnagar riots in 2013.
He has no compunction in telling that Taj was the blot in history and needs to be erased. The world is looking at the Taj Mahal as the monument embellished with glory and pride, but Sangeet Som has some different music to play. The prevailing climate of opinion attuned to judging things in a prejudiced way and with a myopic vision is to promote hatred and hostility against Muslims based on intellectual terrorism.
The very purpose of the provocative statements is to polarize the society which would help in establishing the political sway of BJP. The muddied waters raises the question: Would the monument resplendent with splendor and glory meet the fate the traumatic demolished Babri Masjid?
What is no less disgusting is the fact that Taj Mahal is managed by the UP government and the architecture is within the ambit of legality and tourists keep swelling making the UP government earn a large chunk of money. Any criticism of Taj Mahal is terribly misplaced and highly improper, that too from a BJP MLA whose party is governing the state.
While targeting Taj Mahal as the memory of traitors, Sangeet Som said that Shahjahan who built the 17th century mausoleum in the memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal had jailed his father and wanted to wipe out Hindus. Misquoting history in such a brazen fashion reflects on the quality of the knowledge of the BJP leader. The ignominious ignorance of the BJP leader about the very much known historical incidents suggests the need of the BJP leader to study seriously before making startling revelation.
Sangeet Som’s allegation that Mughals were out to wipe out Hindus is the product of his fertile imagination and virtual falsehood. Mughal rulers were not the religious breed. Instead, the Mughal rulers shared quite cordial relations with Hindus, particularly Rajputs. A lot of Rajputs enjoyed key positions in the Mughal administration unlike the present day communalists who, despite the tall talk of equality and secular values, can’t tolerate a Muslim peon.
In the present environment with the inherent bias every effort is made to see that Muslims do not get an outlet for the manifestation of their talents. There is no need to kill the talented person. The denial of opportunity to the talented person would eventually suffocate him to the death unsung and unwept.
The BJP stalwart, while targeting the splendorous monument as a blot on history, also lashed out at Muslim rule in India as “barbaric and a period of incomparable intolerance”. Before castigating the Muslim rule in India as “barbaric and the period of incomparable intolerance” it would have been better if the BJP had considered the prevailing alarming situation in the country where there is sustained campaign of violence against Muslims in the name of cow protection. The worst irony is that those attacked are booked and prosecuted.
The massive wave of violence is swelling leaps and bounds without any restraint or accountability. Is it no barbarism and incomparable in toleration to kill and maim the innocents and disrupt their families, sometimes in the name of cow protection or combating terrorism or on some other pretexts?
The communal forces have to some extent succeeded in proliferating the anti-Muslim psyche and given this situation it is not difficult to understand the plight of a common and poor Muslims at the hands of those equipped with unlimited power. Is it not a travesty of justice to victimize the innocents, and sometimes the criminal conduct is justified on one pretext or the other.
The controversy over Taj has further expanded with certain forces trying to paint Taj as a Hindu monument without giving thought to the fact that one of the cardinal beauties of the magnificent monument is inscription of Quranic calligraphy on the glorious architecture and there is the existence of the mosque in Taj.
Sangeet Som while dictating his communal agenda at least agreed that it was built by Shahjahan.
Taj Mahal is the symbol of love and affection and placing it in the communal context is uncalled for.
The theories that Taj Mahal was built by non-Muslims are set afloat as part of a conspiracy to lower the morale of the Muslims and penetrate inferiority complex in the community. Such obnoxious efforts are aimed at perpetuating the slavish mentality in the beleaguered community. Such biased approach being implemented aggressively is not limited to Taj Mahal but other monuments or places of worship also could not escape such communal influences which weaken or diminish their Muslim flavor or affiliation.
Muslims in India are too weak to resist such arm twisting. Either Muslim creations are tried to be snuffed out or their essence is changed to some other flavor.
Reacting to Sangeet Som’s derogatory comments over Taj Mahal and Mughals, three time Hydrabad MP AIMIM President Asaduddin Owaisi lashed out at BJP after its legislator Sangeet Som called Taj Mahal a blot on Indian culture built by “traitors”. Condemning Som’s statement, Owaisi said, “If what Som says is true then why did Modi hoist the national flag at Red Fort since it was also built by traitors?”
Describing the BJP man’s comments as uneducated and unfortunate, he said the PM hosted former U.S President Barrack Obama at the Hyderabad house which was also constructed by a traitor.
Owaisi is the only Muslim leader who resists and replies the calumny and disinformation campaign against Muslims. He has emerged as the leader who quickly and effectively responds to the Muslim bashing. His views are shared by the national and international media. He is the only cock in the farmyard. It’s not understood as to why the entire Muslim or secular leadership is sleeping over the distorted pieces of information except a person or two.
In the absence of intellectual combat the anti-Muslim discourse gets one sided and it’s easy to tarnish the image of the community and none sheds tears over the victimization of the defamed community. There is sinister design to hate Muslim campaign.
The BJP tried to maintain distance from the provocative statements of Sangeet Som which is a cosmetic exercise. Distancing from the provocative statements woefully lacks the credible narrative.
It is the absence of any restraining influence by the party over the inflammatory utterances by BJP men which made the deputy CM of UP Dinesh Sharma define Mughals as looters.
Sharma while branding Mughals as looters bypassed the fact that concept of loot implies someone decamping or running away with the booty. In contrast the Mughals not only remained attached to this soil but also made significant contribution to the socio-cultural development of the land. In their quest to enrich the soil the Mughals created the wonders like Taj Mahal so on and so forth.
Whatever comments Sangeet Som or Dinesh Sharma make the fact remains that they are only worth rebuke and derision at large? Only gullible can be fooled.
Such firework is only aimed to divert the attention from the dismal failure of the BJP government whose sheen appears to be wearing off. It is in the national interest with the plural society to ban such fire work before it is too late. Any delay in banning or restraining such firework would only be catastrophic.

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