Hindutva activists protest at Taj Mahal over turnstile gate blocking temple path

AGRA: Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) activists and Siddheshwar Mahadev temple committee members created a ruckus at the high-security zone of Taj Mahal’s west gate on Sunday to protest against ASI’s decision to block one of the routes to a 400-year-old temple.

On a complaint by Tarun Dutt Sharma, conservation assistant for Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) at Taj Mahal a case has been lodged against 30 people, including five named persons.

They allegedly removed a 10X11 ft steel gate which was installed by the ASI to block the access to the Siddheshwar Mahadev temple, located just 350 metres away from the west gate.

According to an HT report, Ravi Dubey is a senior office-bearer of the VHP booked for damaging said that “The gate being installed is blocking passage to Siddheshwar Mahadev temple at Basai Ghat alongside the western wall of Taj Mahal. The temple is 400 years old and has been in existence prior to Taj Mahal. So there is no logic in blocking passage to the temple. But ASI officials did not heed to our requests.

“We dislodged the turnstile gate and will not allow it to be installed at any cost. We will meet the district magistrate on Monday to press our demand,” he said, also claiming to be the general secretary of Siddheshwar Mahadev Temple Committee.

Siasat Web Team