The district court in Agra on Thursday admitted a petition which says the Taj Mahal is a Shiva temple. The petition, filed by six Agra lawyers, also wants permission for Hindus to perform puja there.
Interestingly, a similar petition filed by Harishankar Jain and his friends was dismissed by the same court last month on technical grounds. It had sought permission to file a case on the ownership of the Taj. But this time around, the court admitted the petition, issued notice to the Union Home Secretary, the Union Ministry of Culture and the Archaeological Survey of India, asking them to reply by May 6. The next hearing has been scheduled for May 13.
In their petition, Mr. Jain and five others made Lord Agreshwar Mahadev the main plaintiff to claim the ownership of the Taj Mahal.
Mr. Jain, who said the temple was used to be called Tejo Mahalaya, declared himself to be the “next friend” of the deity.