Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Azam Khan on Wednesday said he fears Taj Mahal would meet the same fate as Babri Masjid, while retorting to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Vinay Katiyar's statement describing Taj Mahal as a "Hindu temple".
"If Babri Masjid can be destroyed, then any building in the country can be pulled down. In such a situation, it will be no surprise if Taj Mahal is also destroyed some day. If Babri Masjid was demolished in the name of Ram Mandir, then these people can do anything," Azam Khan told ANI.
He further said if Babri Masjid was destroyed as people believed there was a temple, then no place of worship in the country was safe.
"During the temple-mosque issue at that time, there was a high court and the Supreme Court stay, but still the mosque was destroyed. I firmly believe that the Taj Mahal is set to meet that same fate. But because there is so much international attention on the issue, the monument is still standing, " Khan said, referring to the 1992 destruction of the 16th century mosque built on Mughal emperor Babur's orders.
Katiyar courted controversy on Wednesday when he claimed that the Mughal mausoleum, Taj Mahal, was a Hindu temple and that its name should be changed. He said that the Taj Mahal was known as Tejo Mahal and had a 'Shivlinga', which was later removed from the monument.
Katiyar's statement comes a day after, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath gave a clear snub to BJP MLA Sangeet Som for stirring the Taj Mahal controversy, stating that "it does not matter who built it and for what reason; it was built by blood and sweat of the Indian labourers".
Som, who was the first to begin this controversy earlier in the week, said that the iconic Taj Mahal was built by traitors and hence, cannot be included in the Indian history.