Maintenance and repair work has started at Taj Mahal and other monuments which were damaged during recent storm and heavy rains. A brass finial, a minaret, some black marble pieces, in addition to scores of trees were damaged in the Taj Mahal. Minor damages were also reported in the Agra Fort, Sikandra and Fatehpur Sikri.
The royal couple, the Duke and duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate Middleton are scheduled visit Taj Mahal on April 16. The couple will be visiting the monument 24 years after the prince’s mother, Lady Diana, visited the Taj Mahal in 1992.
It may be remembered here that last month maintenance workers had found the pinnacle of the south-western minaret of Taj Mahal lying on a cleaning platform surrounding the structure. Three of the minarets of the Taj Mahal are being chemically cleaned and a mesh structure being put up around it. During this work, the pinnacle was found on the cleaning platform.
In mid-2015 the government had undertaken the task of cleaning Taj Mahal for which scaffoldings have been put up around the monument. Since then workers have scaled the monument’s minarets and walls to correct discoloration and remove layers of grime from the structure which was built in 17th-century. It is believed that cleaning of the dome is the most difficult and trickiest of the operation in cleaning the Taj Mahal. It is believed that dome cleaning may take at least ten months for completion.
Cleaning is done by using natural materials and no chemicals are used for the purpose. Workers have been using a natural mud paste to remove yellow discoloration and return the marble to its original white. Caking the structure with fuller’s earth, a sort of clay that some people smother on their skin as a beauty treatment, and cleaning it with water is a time-consuming process and that’s why work is still in progress. Fuller’s earth mud paste absorbs dirt, grease and animal excrement in a natural way without damaging the marble.