In honour of his mother, an Indian man built a near-replica of the Taj Mahal. Amrudeen Sheikh Dawood, 49, built the 743 sq m marble tombstone on a one-acre parcel of land in Tiruvarur, Tamil Nadu, to show his love for Jailani Bibi.

He bought 100 tonnes of marble from Rajasthan and spent 50 million rupees ($610,000) on the memorial’s construction. Ms Bibi died in 2020 after being hospitalised for two weeks following a heart attack.

Mr Dawood, a rice dealer, stated that the 17th century world heritage landmark inspired him to create a Mughal-style tomb for his mother. His duplicate is 12 metres tall and stands on a 1.2-meter pedestal. Each of its four minarets is 14 metres tall. The tomb is about 33 metres wide.

The historical monument is five times the size, rising approximately 60 metres tall on a 6.7 meter pedestal. Its minarets are about 42 metres tall.

“I was madly in love with her. I didn’t want to leave her in the cemetery when she abruptly left me . My brother and I had a vision to build a memorial for her and express our love and affection for her. In 1989, my father died. My mum raised us all by herself. She worked very hard to raise us. She did not remarry and gave up her life for us and my father’s business,” Mr Dawood told The National

Following her death, Mr Dawood contacted engineers and architects and chose a design that mirrored the famed monument in Agra, Uttar Pradesh’s northern state.

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