With Taj Mahal turning a bit green, Indian court gets mad

  • May. 4, 2018 6:55 a.m.

NEW DELHI — The Taj Mahal, that shining white monument to love, is turning a little … green. And yellow. And black.

And India’s Supreme Court is not pleased.

“You all appear to be helpless,” a Supreme Court judge told government officials earlier this week, after an environmental lawyer argued that pollution and insect dung were discoloring the 17th-century building.

“Money should not be the consideration. We might order you to hire experts from within India or abroad. We need to save it,” the judge said, according to numerous Indian media reports. The reports did not give the judge’s name.

The officials, representing the central government and Uttar Pradesh state, where the Taj is located, were given until Wednesday to come up with a plan and report back to the court.

Built by Mogul Emperor Shah Jahan for his favourite wife in the north Indian city of Agra, the monument has been losing its sheen for years. The Archaeological Survey of India, the agency responsible for preserving the country’s monuments, has been coating portions of the Taj with a special clay that, when it is removed, also takes away most discolorations.

But M.C. Mehta, the lawyer who brought the case to the court, said not enough is being done.

“The white sheen is disappearing and instead of that if the green colour, the brown colour, the other colours … are visible, then what is the reason? The reason is that the pollution has become alarming,” he said in an interview after the hearing.

One of the world’s most famous tourist attractions, the Taj Mahal includes a mosque and the graves of the emperor and his wife Mumtaz Mahal.

Agra is a major north Indian industrial centre, and the city is often covered with a fog of pollution. Experts say air pollution and swarms of breeding insects are threatening the Taj by leaving green, yellow and black patches.

Mehta said authorities have not complied with earlier Supreme Court orders to protect the Taj by shutting down area factories.

Just Posted

City of Red Deer gets ball rolling on annexing more land

”It’s important we look ahead,” says Mayor Veer

Walmart melding online and in-store shopping

South Red Deer Walmart recently underwent six months of renovations

Updated: Nature trail unveiled at RDC

Trail unveiling and tree planting honours Nova Chemicals $2 million donation

Video: Windows smashed at three Red Deer businesses

Red Deer RCMP arrest man after vandalism spree

Automated cars could kill wide range of jobs, federal documents say

OTTAWA — More than one million jobs could be lost to the… Continue reading

McGill research finds significant driving impairment 5 hours after cannabis use

MONTREAL — Driving under the influence of cannabis remains dangerous even five… Continue reading

Family: Remembering the important things

It seems so much of life is work and routine and then… Continue reading

Canada gets into Women’s World Cup with 7-0 win over Panama

FRISCO, Texas — Christine Sinclair isn’t concerned about chasing records. She’s set… Continue reading

Baldwin urges ‘overthrow’ of Trump government via voting

MANCHESTER, N.H. — Actor Alec Baldwin followed up his latest parody portrayal… Continue reading

Prince Harry and Meghan expecting their 1st child in spring

CANBERRA, Australia — Prince Harry and his wife, the Duchess of Sussex,… Continue reading

Sears files for Chapter 11 amid plunging sales, massive debt

NEW YORK — Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday, buckling… Continue reading

Doctors to debate medical pot as more patients expected to ask for prescriptions

VANCOUVER — Doctors with opposing views on whether medical marijuana should be… Continue reading

Most Read