While hearing a 2010 appeal filed by Archeological Survey of India over ownership of Taj Mahal, Supreme Court asked the Sunni Waqf Board what documents do they have to prove that Taj Mahal is their property?
Appearing for the board, senior advocate VV Giri told the apex court that Mughal emperor Shah Jahan executed a wakfnama in favour of the board.
Advocate Vishnu Jain told ANI: "Sunni Central Waqf Board declared Taj Mahal as Waqf property in 2004 against which Archaeological survey of India filed an appeal. In that plea, SC has sought reply from Waqf board that what documents do they have to prove that Taj Mahal is their property."
The board has a week to produce the signatures of the emperor who died in 1666, almost 18 years after the monument he built in the memory of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, was completed.
Taj Mahal is one of several iconic monuments managed by ASI. Considered one of the most beautiful monuments in the world, Taj Mahal has been dragged into several controversies in recent years.
Advocate Jain also told ANI that a civil suit has been filed in Agra civil court caliaming that the Agra's Taj Mahal is a Hindu temple.
Some political leaders and groups like Hindu Mahasabha have also claimed the monument is in fact Tejo Mahalaya - a Hindu temple. (ANI)