The Taj Mahal that aptly denotes a ‘symbol of love’ is a mausoleum of Mumtaz Mahal (favorite wife of Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan) that is situated in Agra, India. This structure reflects the epitome of Muhgal architecture under Shah Jahan. It incorporates a exclusive blend of Indian, Turkish, Persian as well as Islamic architectural styles.
Taj Mahal, which is also referred to as ‘the Taj’ was declared as the World Heritage Site in the year 1983. UNESCO also cited this structure, as ‘the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage’.
Embellished in white marble quarried from Makrana (Rajasthan), this structure is a spectacle to look at, which had taken about 22 years for construction incorporating a huge force of skilled artisans. It was completed in the year 1648 under the principal designer of Taj Mhal, Ustad Ahmad Lahouri. It is laid out in the chahar-bagh pattern that was employed in the Mughal architecture. The gateway to the Taj Mahal is constructed in red sandstone, and an ideal entrance to this magnificent structure. In fact, it is said that construction of this huge marble structure had depleted the Mughal treasury, giving an economic setback to the Empire.
Owing to the growth of industries in the area around the Taj, concerns that been raised as to the damage to the structure owing to the change in the color of the marble.