From architectural marvels to natural wonders, India is home to a number of heritage monuments. Back in the day, they were pretty susceptible to destruction during wars and protecting them was one of the topmost concerns of the nation.
Have you ever wondered how the Taj Mahal, the nation’s most prized monument, was safeguarded during wartime? Here’s how!
In 1942, during World War II, the British Government protected the iconic Taj Mahal with thick bamboo scaffoldings to protect it from German and Japanese Bombers. Since there was no high precision GPS and satellite imagery back in those days, the monument looks like just a bamboo stockpile to the bomber planes flying above.
Chinese and Allied officers visit Taj Mahal during #WW2. General He Yingqin is in the middle. The Indian monument is covered in bamboo scaffolding to hide it from Japanese bombers. #China #Japan pic.twitter.com/WrG95EaVvA— China in WW2 (@chinaww2) February 15, 2018
While the photographs only show the dome being covered, it is extensively believed that the entire gleaming white marble structure was covered. Even when India was fighting a war against Pakistan in 1965 and 1971, the same thing was done.
Post the 9/11 attacks on the world trade towers, the Taj Mahal was covered with cloth as a precautionary measure by the Archaeological Survey of India.
The Second World War photograph of Taj Mahal covered with bamboo as a camouflage against aerial bombing. pic.twitter.com/carBgidSmD— Sushant Singh (@SushantSin) June 16, 2017
Here, Private First Class John C. Byron Jr. is trying to grab a fish in the pond right outside of the classic monument while Corporal Anthony J. Scopelliti and Private First Class Ray Cherry witness his efforts.
Do you think we would still be staring at the monument standing in all its glory if these ingenious bamboo scaffoldings were not placed during those turbulent times?