Shah Jahan’s annual Urs in March 2020
The 364th annual ‘Urs’ or death anniversary of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal to immortalize his love for his queen Mumtaz Mahal, will be observed at Taj Mahal in Agra from 21st March to 23rd March 2020.
The original graves of the royal couple, located deep down in the monument, will be thrown open for public viewing and entry to the monument shall be free for all. It is only during the annual Urs that tourists can get to see the original graves. For the rest of the year, the replicas of the graves are open for public viewing. On March 21st and 22nd, tourists’ entry will be free from 2 pm onward and on the last day of the Urs, March 23rd, entry will be free from morning till evening.
It ritual will commence from 21st March with the washing of the graves of the emperor and queen Mumtaz Mahal. Then ‘gusl ki rasm’ (bathing of the graves), followed by ‘sandal ki rasm’ (sandal ceremony), ‘gul ki rasam’( flower ceremony) ‘chadar poshi’ (ceremonial laying of chadar) and later a qawwali program.
Later, a special several meters long ‘chadar’ in seven colors will be offered.
At a preparatory meeting with the administration and the police, the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) explained the security concerns and asked the organizers to follow the established norms and procedures.
The Taj Mahal was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983. It is one of the Seven Wonders of the World which is considered as the most photogenic destinations of India. It is one of the most exquisite structures ever built by any emperor. It was constructed by the fifth Mughal emperor in the fond memory of his favorite wife Mumtaj Mahal. The Taj Mahal in terms of architecture, is one of the most symmetrical structures in the world, constructed using pure white marble and adorned with precious and semi precious stones. The construction started in 1631 and got completed in 1653 AD; 20,000 workers worked day and night together for 22 years.