India’s Taj Mahal is one of the seven wonders of the world. A grand marble mausoleum which was completed in 1653 was already getting yellowish because of acid rain. Acid rain is one of the biggest causes of increasing pollution in the environment.
As per as report published in TOI, Agra (where the Taj Mahal is situated) has some of the highest levels of atmospheric black carbon in the country.
But a new problem is arising. The Taj Mahal’s marble white sheen is attracting a tiny mosquito-like insect, Chironomus calligraphus. As published in TOI, India’s National Green Tribunal, an environmental court, issued notice to various government bodies about this threat.
Humans are to be blamed for this!
Over the last few years, these insects have increased and are attracted by the monument. These insects are leaving greenish-black feces, which is in turn discoloring the monument. But it’s not the insects who should be blamed. It’s the increasing pollution in the River Yamuna due to the constant dumping of solid and liquid municipal waste. This waste is increasing the algal growth and phosphorus and that’s the primary food of these insects.
Though the stain is water soluble and can be cleaned, archaeologist Bhuvan Vikram Singh says:
We are trying to clean it with water. But cleaning the Taj Mahal with water will not solve the problem. We know where and how these insects grow, so if we solve the problem at the basic level, we can stop them from growing in numbers and there will be no marks on the Taj.
Here is the video telling about the threats The Taj Mahal is under: