Taj Mahal Is Not Symbol Of True Love: It’s Manifestation Of Insensitivity And Cruelty!

Taj Mahal: Even if it's about true love, it's also equally about lack of conscious approach towards health of woman. It's about romance mired in bloodshed and acts of vandalism.

Taj Mahal: Even if it’s about true love, it’s also equally about lack of conscious approach towards health of woman. It’s about romance mired in bloodshed and acts of vandalism.



We always get carried away by false images, popular sentiments, more so when they are associated with well-known things. Worse, we dare not put in real perspective our own doubts. We keep on believing only because that’s been the known reality since time immemorial. This holds true about Taj Mahal. It’s popular, across the globe as symbol of true love. Whether it’s President of any nation or common man from a different part of the globe, they all love to get their selfies silhouetted against the backdrop of the Taj Mahal. It’s high time we become aware of infamous facets of Taj Mahal and shatter rhetoric strengthened by movies and sponsored literature!  

One of the flaws of education system in India is that it has made analytical abilities of Indian students inherently remain in awe of myths created by Western scholars. Anyway, the suppressed truth about Taj Mahal is that Empress Mumtaz had 14 children and she died due to postpartum hemorrhage after her last childbirth. This fact which appears in A Textbook of Postpartum Hemorrhage: A Comprehensive Guide to Evaluation”, edited by Christopher B-Lynch, got new lease of life when Dr. Anant Kumar,  Assistant Professor, Xavier Institute of Social Service, Ranchi, substantiated it with new findings in his research paper titled “Monument of Love or Symbol of Maternal Death: The Story Behind the Taj Mahal.

In fact in the eyes of Nobel Laureate V. S. Naipaul Taj Mahal is “only despot’s monument to a woman”. Naipaul, trashing the popular perceptions, dares to expose the misdeeds of Muslim rulers in India: “Mosque on temple: ruin on ruin. This is the North”. He was candid in confessing that magnificent buildings built during Mughal period were symbolic of “personal plunder”. Naipaul, shattering the romantic illusions pervading the Taj Mahal, hailed it as ‘wasteful’- “The Taj is so wasteful, so decadent and in the end so cruel that I found it painful to be there for very long. This is an extravagance that speaks about the blood of the people.” The sentiments of V S Naipaul might appear against the secular spirit of nation forcing writers like William Darymple to give way to a knee jerk reaction that historical knowledge of V S Naipaul was flawed.

How can you ignore the harsh truth stated by Naipaul even if you are able to show Muslim rulers in better light? What so wrong about it when Naipaul says that “when you see so many Hindu temples of the 10th century or earlier disfigured, defaced, you realise that something terrible happened. I feel that the civilisation of that closed world was mortally wounded by those invasions … The Old World is destroyed. That has to be understood. Ancient Hindu India was destroyed.”

Let’s come to standard historical findings unearthed by Dr. Anant Kumar in his research work. After delving deep into historical records he stated that “physiological causes of Arjumand’s death were postpartum haemorrhage, anaemia and repeated child bearing without birth spacing.” Arjumand Banu Begum got married to Shah Jahan at the age of 19 and she died at age of 39 on 17th June 1631. In between she had 13 children and she died while giving birth to 14th child. Dr. Anant Kumar suggest that ” 2 1/2 years to 3 years between births” was totally ignored largely because of “social-cultural and religious cause”. “Being a follower of Islam, it must have been difficult for a woman to think about contraception and pregnancy regulation.”  Interestingly, almost at the same time, in different part of the globe ‘a medical doctor Johan von Hoorn started midwifery school in Stockholm in 1708’.

In the light of above-mentioned facts are we still going to treat Taj Mahal as symbol of love? Even if it’s about true love, it’s also equally about lack of conscious approach towards health of woman. It’s about romance mired in bloodshed and acts of vandalism.

The Taj is so wasteful, so decadent and in the end so cruel that I found it painful to be there for very long. This is an extravagance that speaks about the blood of the people. (V S Naipaul)

The Taj is so wasteful, so decadent and in the end so cruel that I found it painful to be there for very long. This is an extravagance that speaks about the blood of the people. (V S Naipaul)

References:

Monument of Love or Symbol of Maternal Death: The Story Behind the Taj Mahal

A Textbook of Postpartum Hemorrhage: A Comprehensive Guide to Evaluation

V.S. Naipaul: Critical Essays

Trapped in the ruins

Pics Credit:

Pic One

Pic Two

7 responses

  1. Many thanks to these readers for making their appearance felt on this page🙂🙂🙂

    Carmen Ampuero, Lima, Peru; Ashok Gupta, Pediatrician, Faizabad, Uttar Pradesh; Prassoon Suryadas, USA: Ravi Hooda, Canada; Pavan Pareek, Ahmednagar, Maharashtra; Nikhil Garg, Noida, Uttar Pradesh; Swami Prabhu Chaitanya, Patna, Bihar; Raminder Deepak, Mohali, Punjab; Mithalal Choudhary, Satara, Maharashtra; Suraj Tarafdar, Dum Dum, West Bengal; Radhakrishna Lambu, Bangalore, Karnataka; Ajay Tyagi, Noida, Uttar Pradesh; Swami Prabhu Chaitanya, Patna, Bihar; Ranjeet Singh, Noida, Uttar Pradesh; Deepak Sarin, New Delhi; Himanshu Bhushan Pandey, Siwan, Bihar; Anand G. Sharma, Mumbai; Vishal Sabharwal, Ludhiana, Punjab; Raghwesh Tripathi, Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh and Pratik Pandey, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.

  2. Mukesh Tiwary, Patna, Bihar, said:

    In India we are served distorted History. All cooked up and no facts!

    ******************
    Author’s Response:

    So let’s rope in real facts..Let History for us no longer means studying biased, concocted and flawed views of scholars from West. They had their vested interests in mind and so whatever was in our favour got mercilessly edited! Therefore, let’s restore real versions and real aspects.

  3. Niketan Magadh, USA, said:

    Arvind, Taj Mahal apart from the exposed reality I don’t find it beautiful either!
    This should be broken and houses should be built for the poor, who can live there and have at least a life of dignity!!

    ************
    Author’s Response:

    Good idea😛 That way we would also get rid of fear of Taj Mahal being bombed during war time, environmental hazards etc..

  4. Abdul Khader Jilani said:

    To be honest, Islam is totally against the whole context of Taj Mahal, It is a waste of money, a monument of mourning etc., Aurangazeb jailed Shah Jahan to stop him from squandering more tax payer money. The only reason people are still bearing it is, it generates a lot of money in terms of tourism.

    Most people associate Taj Mahal with mosques and Islam, hence I wanted to point out this thing.

    **********
    Author’s Response:

    Thanks for letting me aware of your views in this regard! The point which I wished to emphasize was that such monuments in India have been given undue importance. Their importance got exaggerated!

  5. Deewaker Pandey, New Delhi, said:

    Very correct. People forget that the labourers who constructed it lost their hands. Shah Jahan got married to Mumtaz’s sister. Mumtaz was his fourth wife. Taj Mahal was built by destroying Shiv Temple. We have been made to read false history and all because of so called secularism defined by Nehru and Gandhi.

    ********************
    Author’s Response:

    Thanks for adding new facts…There is urgent need to have likes of PN Oak who dared to challenge the facts mentioned in the History written by the conquerors or by the flatterers of the conquerors…

  6. Author’s words for some of the readers who arrived on this post🙂

    *********************************
    Author’s words for Prassoon Suryadas, USA:

    Trying to shatter the myths🙂

    ********************************
    Author’s words for Carmen Ampuero, Lima, Peru:

    Sometimes we need to look beyond the popular perceptions..I am just trying to do that in a genuine way!!

    *******************
    Author’s words for Vivek Srivastava, New Delhi:

    We were students of philosophy, English and Ancient History..I am making full use of them in my style🙂

    ***************
    Author’s words for Deewaker Pandey, New Delhi:

    Trying to review history from fresh viewpoint..

    *****************
    Author’s words for Ajay Tyagi, Noida, Uttar Pradesh:

    History means real facts, and not sponsored ideas!

    *****************
    Author’s words for Nikhil Garg, Noida, Uttar Pradesh:

    Let’s start respecting our History from fresh angles!!

    **********************************************
    Author’s words for Ravi Hooda, Canada, and Pawan Pareek:

    Trying to make Indian History close to real facts gone missing…

    *********************

    Author’s words for Deepak Sareen, New Delhi:

    Not an easy task to set records straight for things that took place in distant past yet it’s up to us alone to make facts “true” for coming generations…

    ************************************

    Author’s words for Vishal Sabharwal, Ludhiana Punjab and Anand G. Sharma, Mumbai:

    Let’s understand and know History as it is instead of understanding it from flawed perspective of Westerners…

    *****************

    Author’s words for Raghwesh Tripathi, Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh:

    It’s high time we stop worshiping Western scholars! Let’s understand that they were only half-hearted in making us have access to real facts!!

    ************
    Author’s words for Swami Prabhu Chaitanya, Patna, Bihar:

    In this article I have gone beyond the normal perceptions related to Taj Mahal…

    ****************

  7. Mahadeo Nalawade, Pune, Maharashtra, said:

    Taj Mahal is not Queen Mumtaz’s tomb but an ancient Hindu temple palace of Lord Shiva (then known as Tejo Mahalaya ) and the Shiva temple palace was usurped by Shah Jahan from then Maharaja of Jaipur, Jai Singh. In his own court ch ronicle, Badshahnama,Shah Jahan admits that an exceptionally beautiful grand mansion in Agra was taken from Jai SIngh for Mumtaz’s burial . The ex-Maharaja of Jaipur still retains in his secret collection two orders from Shah Jahan for surrendering the Taj building. Using captured temples and mansions, as a burial place for dead courtiers and royalty was a common practice among Muslim rulers. Shah Jahan boasted of a haram of thousands of captive Hindus he often violently kidnapped and raped and ravished per his own biography and other Muslim histories. His wars and taxes forced thousands of Hindu peasants to sell their own children into Muslim slavery according to Qaznivi and Fray Sebastio Manrique. It was in fact a culling of Hindus to satisfy the sexual drives of Muslim conquerors and included girls and boys alike.

    Shah Jahan’s Royal Haram featured 5000 concubines — mostly Rajput —- mostly kidnapped and exploited as sex slaves until their appeal tattered when they were then either handed around to be gang raped or else killed and dumped like garbage along public roads for Hindus to see their bodies with their breasts hacked off. And memoirs and even the official biography of Shah Jahan boasted of this as if it was something to be proud of. But his love, if it even existed, was not mentioned.

    ****************

    Author’s Response:

    Very well said…This is pretty informative. But I wonder why did High Court and later Supreme Court dismissed claims about it being a Shiva Temple? Anyway, I must thank you for throwing light on actualities of that period. Let people know what was real face of a great lover!!

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