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Do you know that India has not one but two Taj Mahals? Indeed, there is a monument identical to the Taj that stands in Aurangabad in Maharashtra. It is a mausoleum called Bibi Ka Maqbara ("Tomb of the Lady") built by Prince Azam Shah, the son of the sixth Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, between 1651 and 1661 A.D, in the memory of his mother, Dilras Banu Begum.

Bibi Ka Maqbara draws its inspiration from the famous Taj Mahal of Agra built by none other that Prince Azam Shah’s grandfather, Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. Azam Shah intended to build a monument that would rival the Taj Mahal. Unfortunately, he lacked the treasury his grandfather had access to, as well as the skilled labour the treasury bought, resulting in a poor copy of the latter. Even so, Bibi Ka Maqbara is an architectural wonder with intricate designs, carved motifs, imposing structure and beautifully landscaped Mughal-style garden. Due to its strong resemblance to the Taj Mahal, it is lovingly called the “Taj of the Deccan”.

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This is not Taj Mahal. It’s Bibi Ka Maqbara. Photo credit

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© Amusing Planet, 2014.


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