NEW DELHI, India: An Indian man, Anand Prakash Chouksey, 52, has built a smaller replica of the famed 17th century Taj Mahal, often called a monument to love, for his wife. However, this version is being used as the couple's residence, not a mausoleum.
One-third the size of the original, the imitation includes white marble from the same city in Rajasthan state that provided the Taj Mahal's stone, the real monument's large dome, intricate minarets and even some of its artwork.
The famed Taj Mahal was built from 1632 to 1653 by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in the northern Indian city of Agra in memory of his favorite wife, Mumtaz. It is India's largest tourist draw, attracting millions of visitors every year.
"I jokingly told my wife, if you pass over, then I will build a Taj Mahal," said Chouksey, a hospital owner who lives in Burhanpur. "She obviously refused and said she doesn't want to die. Then I said, not a problem, I will make a Taj Mahal you can live in."
The replica took three years to build and artisans from Agra were hired to recreate the artwork on the marble.