Aurangzeb's Tomb In Aurangabad Closed By ASI For Five Days

by Ksheera Sagar - May 19, 2022 05:39 PM +05:30 IST
Aurangzeb's Tomb In Aurangabad Closed By ASI For Five Days Aurangzeb's Tomb in Khuldabad (Twitter)
Snapshot
  • Telangana MLA Abkbaruddin Owaisi's visit to Aurangzeb's tomb had courted statements from all political parties of Maharashtra.

    They said Owaisi's visit was an attempt to flare up communal tensions in the state.

Aurangzeb's tomb, which came into limelight after AIMIM leader and Telangana MLA Abkbaruddin Owaisi's visit and kickstarted a political slugfest, has been closed for five days by the Archaeological Survey of India.

The site had come to be the centre of controversy ever since Owaisi's visit to it on 12 May and has been now shut off for visitors for five days by the ASI. This comes after a local mosque committee in Khuldabad, where Aurangazeb lies buried, tried to lock the ASI site following the tensions that rose around it.

Owaisi's visit had courted statements from all political parties of Maharashtra with most condemning the visit to the grave of a ruler who fought against Chatrapathi Shivaji Maharaj and that it was an attempt to flare up communal tensions in the state.

While strong statements were exchanged politically with some questioning the need for the existence of such a monument in the first place, the ASI enhanced the security at the site. But with rising tensions around the subject of the grave and Aurangzeb himself in the state as well as country, the ASI decided to close the site for five days.

'Earlier, the mosque committee tried to lock the place, but we opened it. On Wednesday (18 May), we took a decision to shut the tomb for next five days. We will review the situation and then decide to open it or to keep it closed for another five days,' said ASI's Aurangabad circle superintendent Milan Kumar Chauley, as reported by PTI.

Owaisi had held a rally on his visit to Aurangabad and, in response to MNS Chief Raj Thakeray's loudspeaker agitation, remarked saying, "Those who are barking, let them bark. We should move on like a lion, by ignoring them. You should remember that a trap is being laid in the name of some people. We have to be alert and ensure we don't fall into it." Thakeray had held a rally in the town earlier this month.

His visit to the tomb after the rally had all parties riled up against it but the ruling Shiv Sena was also heavily criticised by the opposition for letting the AIMIM leader glorify a Mughal ruler whom Shivaji had fought against.

"Asadudin Owaisi goes and pays tribute to Aurangzeb on his grave and you keep seeing that, you should feel ashamed of it. Listen to me Owaisi, even a dog will not pee on the identity of Aurangzeb," said former Maharashtra CM and BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis, in Mumbai, mocking the Shiv Sena's inaction and questioning their 'shamelessness'.

Meanwhile, MNS spokesperson Gajanan Kale had initially warned the government that if it didn't take action, his party would have to take the matter into their own hands. On Tuesday, Kale tweeted questioning the Shiv Sena, asking "What is the need for Aurangzeb's grave in the land of Shivaji Maharaj? Demolish this grave, so that no separatists (like Owaisi) will come to bow on it. Even Balasaheb Thackeray had said the same, don't you want to listen to anything of Balasaheb?"

Shiv Sena spokesperson and MP Sanjay Raut said the Owaisi brothers were challenging Maharashtra and that the Sena had accepted this challenge. "We buried Aurangzeb in this soil. His (Aurangzeb) followers, who want to do politics, will meet the same fate in Maharashtra," said Raut.

Also Read: Audrey Truschke Says Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb Protected Hindu Temples, But Here’s A Record Of His Rule

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