Yogi Adityanath seeks to shed 'communal' tag?

Bibi ka Maqbara in Aurangabad

Bibi ka Maqbara in Aurangabad

Agra, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath arrived here on Thursday, a visit seen as a damage control exercise.

In the Taj, Adityanath went to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) office and saw a slide show about the historical and cultural details of the monuments in Agra and the steps taken to conserve them.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath visited Agra today and participate in the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan by sweeping the road outside Taj Mahal.

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He also posed for photographs with foreign tourists and interacted with them.

However, in a significant departure from his "pre-election" statements on Taj, Yogi was quick to call it "pride of India" and also referred to it as a 'world class monument'. Mughals first demolished the Shiva temple and then built the Taj Mahal. At the time, Adityanath was visiting the Taj Mahal along with several senior BJP leaders, including state tourism minister Rita Bahuguna Joshi.

A News 18 report says that residents of Kachhpura village, near the Taj Mahal, alleged that they had been locked in their homes during Adityanath's visit on Thursday morning.

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Mehta told the bench that the government was committed to protect the Taj Mahal and he will file a comprehensive policy regarding this before the court.

The MLA said that all the mosques in the country had been built after demolishing temples and temples should be rebuilt at the same spot. He had highlighted how the mausoleum had been built with the "blood and sweat of Indian labourers" and promised to beautify the areas around the Taj. It attracts lakhs of tourists.

This was a significant departure from his remarks at a rally in Bihar a year ago, when he had said it does not represent Indian culture and that foreign dignitaries should be presented with the Gita rather than Taj Mahal replicas. "It is a fact", Jagan Prasad Garg told reporters, in line with earlier comments made by BJP's Vinay Katiyar.

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Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce has been booted out of parliament because of his dual New Zealand citizenship. MALCOLM ROBERTS: His seat will go to the next candidate on the Queensland One Nation ticket, Fraser Anning.

Even so, Yogi found time to give the place a quick sweep, taking a broom starting a "cleanliness drive" at the western gate of Taj Mahal, accompanied by over 500 supporters and locals.

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