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The Taj Crisis

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There’s always something going on in this country… good, bad, ugly. In that respect one is always assured a subject for making conversation or writing articles. But frankly speaking, going by the nature of topics making the rounds, sometimes, one wonders if it wouldn’t be nicer to have nothing to speak of rather than opine on the things we do.

One of the tragic stories of the previous month revolved around the Taj Mahal. The government isn’t exactly tearing its dome apart, but simply considering a proposition to alter the present landscape, making life more posh and swanky with shopping malls and fun parks. And so although one is not physically harming the structure, nevertheless, many would contend, it is harming the aesthetics enough to make the whole idea sacrilegious.

The debate on at present is keeping tourism in the fore… but how can one be so utterly callous? The Taj Mahal can never be a by-the-way issue to be discussed at a tourism fair. It is far too rich, beautiful, splendid, intense and alive to be insulted so impersonally as if its use was only to rake in funds for a small city or a large country. And just as this applies to this magnificent piece of artistic endeavour, so does it to innumerable other specimens lying scattered through the length and breadth of this country. To mar their beauty, to neglect their contribution, to destroy their edifices… here, one is waging war on something that is not just stone or maudlin legends, but a concrete chunk of living history.

Taj is just a catalyst to have triggered off a realization and we at Next Future are concerned with the almost negligible understanding there is in this nation towards its age old history. The landscape may or may not be altered, Taj Mahal may or may not survive another government fancy or a century’s outlook. But at least, if one begins the process to understand the spirit that once guided us and still does, then its just possible that much can be saved, even if in the nick of time, from the onslaught of ignorance.