Trudeau hails Taj Mahal as 'one of the most beautiful places'

ANI | Updated: Feb 18, 2018 14:16 IST

Agra (Uttar Pradesh) [India], Feb 18 (ANI): Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wrote on the visitor's book after visiting the Taj Mahal with his family here on Sunday.

"Thank you for the wonderful visit to one of the most beautiful places in the world," he wrote on the visitor's book.

Trudeau said that it was his second visit to Taj Mahal.

"About 35 years ago, when I was 11 years, I came to India on an official trip with my father (former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau). I had come down to see Agra from New Delhi to see the Taj Mahal," Trudeau recalled.

"For me to be present on an official trip while bringing my kids with me to share this is really special and being able to enjoy this as a dad with my kids is really nice," he added.

It may be noted that Pierre Trudeau was the Prime Minister of Canada from 1968 to 1984.

Braj Bhushan, the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) commandant of the Taj Mahal unit in Agra, termed Trudeau's visit as good and said that the Canadian leader and his family were accorded with special police protection.

"The visit by the Canadian Prime Minister was good. We accorded special police protection to them, which is mandatory for any head of the state, who visits Taj Mahal. They spent quality time at the Taj Mahal and were there for one hour," Bhushan said.

Trudeau was accompanied along with his wife Sophie Gregoire and his three children, Xavier, Ella-Grace, and Hadrien.

Many foreign dignitaries have visited the Taj Mahal in the past few years.

The Taj Mahal, located along the Yamuna river, was built by Shah Jahan, a 17th-century Mughal ruler for his wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died while giving birth to her fourteenth child.

It is one of the most outstanding examples of Mughal architecture, having a combination of Indian, Persian and Islamic influences.

The structure of the monument is built entirely with white marble, studded with semi-precious stones and is inscribed with verses of Quran. It is surrounded by four minarets.

It was one of the Seven Wonders of the World and is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1983.

Trudeau is on his way to Mathura, where he will visit the Wild Life Century (Elephant Conservation Center).

The sanctuary will remain shut for around two hours to the public, owing to Trudeau's visit.

The Canadian Prime Minister, who arrived in India on Saturday, is on a week-long state visit to the country. (ANI)