Questioning the ownership of Taj Mahal as the property of Walkf Board, the Supreme Court told UP Sunni Central Walkf Board to produce original title documents bearing emperor Shah Jahan’s signatures handing over Taj Mahal as Wakf property if the court had to accept the board’s claim over the world famous monument.
Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra said ‘“Who in India will accept that the Taj Mahal belongs to the Wakf Board?”, demanding to know when Wakf Board came into the picture while tracing the history of the monument. When was it given to you? When did you come in? For over 250 years the East India Company was in possession. After that it passed to the central government. The ASI (Archaeological Survey of India) has been in charge of managing it. It had the right of administration. “Shah Jahan was in jail. He was looking at the Taj,” the CJI scoffed. “I want to see Shah Jahan’s handwriting, his signature if there’s any such document. It would be very interesting to see his handwriting, his signature’.
The board, through senior advocate V Giri, insisted that Shah Jahan had declared Taj Mahal as Wakf property.
This prompted the three-member bench of CJI and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud to demand to see the original title deeds.