March 24, 2005 13:13 IST
Last Updated: March 24, 2005 13:34 IST
Bharatiya Janata Party leader Vinay Katiyar on Wednesday claimed that the Taj Mahal in Agra was actually a Shiva temple built by Raja Jai Singh and was named 'Tejo Mai Mahal'.
"This fact finds mention in the book Badshahnama by Abdul Hamid Lahori, a close associate of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan," Katiyar said in Lucknow.
He added: "It is no doubt a graveyard as Shah Jahan brought back the body of his wife Mumtaz Mahal from Burahanpur village, where she died, and buried it in the temple after removing the Shivalinga."
"It actually belongs to us (Hindus) and we will do everything possible to reclaim it," Katiyar said.
He added that a 'Shankar Sena' would soon be formed and Damrus distributed among the people to create awareness on this issue.
His statement came close on the heels of claims of ownership of the Taj by the Shia community and Uttar Pradesh Sunni Waqf Board with the support of UP Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Azam Khan.
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