Taj Mahal
Taj Mahal

Aurangabad: A row has erupted over a photo session by some unidentified couples, believed to be tourists, at the famous Bibi Ka Maqbara in Maharashtra’s Aurangabad, which history-lovers have dubbed “indecent”.

The purported incident occurred on October 4 at the famous historical monument, also called as the ‘Taj of Deccan’. Photos of the ‘session’ have gone viral since then.

The maqbara or mausoleum was commissioned in 1660 by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in the memory of his first and chief wife Dilras Banu Begum.

“This photo session by some couples was indecent. Such shoots should not be allowed in historical monuments,” local historian Dulari Qureshi said on Sunday.

Echoing Qureshi, another history-lover and advocate Swapnil Joshi said such session would ruin the image of India’s rich culture. “The historical tanks and the pathway that leads to the main monument (in the maqbara) was used for this indecent photo shoot,” he said.

Joshi said prompt and timely action by government agencies concerned will act as a deterrent in future.

“We talk about decency of our values and culture to the world. Whether it is a cave, a tomb or a fort... a code of conduct is necessary (for tourists). Officials should ensure that norms are adhered to and decency is maintained during photo sessions,” he said.

Meanwhile, Qureshi said such “indecency” will send a wrong message as a large number of foreign tourists flock the monument.

Aurangabad History Society’s Founder Secretary and assistant professor, History, Bina Sengar has expressed anguish over the incident.

“How such photo shoots can be allowed in the front area of the Bibi ka Maqbara. Even if they have permissions, decency should be maintained,” Sengar said.

When contacted, Superintendent Archaeologist Deelip Kumar Khamari said he had not seen the images of the photo session. “I have not seen those images hence I will not comment on the issue,” Khamari said.

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