Indian Businessman Builds Scaled-Down Taj Mahal Replica as Home for Wife

An Indian businessman has built a scaled down replica of the Taj Mahal and dedicated it to his wife.

Anand Prakash Chouksey built the scaled-down replica of the iconic Taj Mahal as a home for his wife of 27 years.

The 52-year-old Indian businessman built his “monument of love” in Burhanpur city in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh.

“It was a gift for my wife but also for the town and its people,” Mr Chouksey told the BBC.

The house cost about 20 million rupees (£199,000; $260,000) to build, he said.

The Taj Mahal is a mausoleum complex in Agra, western Uttar Pradesh state, northern India. It is considered the finest example of Mughal architecture (a blend of Indian, Persian, and Islamic styles).

It was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his queen Mumtaz who died while giving birth to their 14th child.

The stunning marble monument, famed for its intricate lattice work, is one of India’s biggest tourist attractions. Before the pandemic, it drew as many as 70,000 people every day – a list that has included celebrities and dignitaries.

Mr Chouksey’s replica – nestled deep inside his sprawling 50-acre property, which includes a hospital, has also been attracting a steady stream of visitors.

People walk in the lawns and click pictures, he said. “A lot of people have also started to do their pre-wedding shoots here,” Mr Chouksey added.

“I don’t stop them because in our town, we are a close-knit community where everyone knows everyone. So, my house is open for all.”

Mr Chouksey said that not all visitors are allowed inside the house because “after all, it is our home and we live there”.