When they say love is eternal, and to prove this an 80 year old postmaster is rewriting history by constructing his memorial of love. Shah Jahan made a spectacular declaration of love for his favorite wife Mumtaz Mahal around 350 by building the Taj Mahal and now retired postmaster, Faizal Hasan Quadri, is building his very own Taj Mahal for his deceased wife in Bulandshahar, UP.
The story of this old postmaster is not some fairytale but of a normal person who got married to Tajamulli in 1953. After fifty-eight years, Tajamulli Begum could not survive as she was suffering from throat cancer and took her last breath in 2011. Since then Quadri devoted all his finances and property to carve out a beautiful memorial in remembrance of her, just like Shah Jahan did. This man in 21st century, out of her immense love, but low on financial funds began the construction of a mini Taj Mahal. After her death, Quadri buried her on the agricultural land where the construction is mounted.
However, where his love did stand the test of time, due to lack of funds he is being tested once more,”Initially, I sold a piece of land for Rs 6 lakh and my wife’s gold and silver jewellery for Rs 1.5 lakh and got the ‘makbara’ (mausoleum) constructed with the help of a local mason named Asgar. A total of Rs 11 lakh was spent, but now I have to get marble studded on the monument and also to build a lush green park around it, both of which is likely to cost me another Rs 6-7 lakh,” Qadri said.
This man who spent all his money and possession on his wife shares extreme pride by making this memorial. However, a lot of people came over to help him financially but he ignored saying that it is his gift for his wife which he wants to construct from his own money. His touching efforts are truly rare and the self-esteem of this old man is just as rare too.
Quadri also added for his memorial, “Asgar prepared the dome and constructed the four ‘minars’ around the central building, which is a little more than 27-feet in height. The structure is built on my own land and I have also tried to plant some trees around it and have a small water body at the back side of the building. However, work has mostly been held up due to finances as marble costs are high. A number of people have offered me money that I have refused to accept so far. This is my personal endeavour for my late wife and embodies my love for her. So I should do this on my own”.
The old, retired postmaster was recently invited for a meeting with Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, who wants to praise his efforts and wants to offer him some financial aid, said additional district magistrate Vishal Singh. Quadri is also looking forward to meet the chief minister but he is not willing to accept any financial assistance. He added, “I will go to meet him (Akhilesh Yadav) and will request him to get my village school recognized by the education board instead.” he said.
When Quadri was asked when this idea came to him, he said it came from him wanting to prove the power of love,”I have told my brother to bury me here by the side of my wife. I have deposited the fees with the Wakf board also. Everything that comes has to go away some day. My wife is dead. I will also die some day. The monument too might not stand forever. I just wish to see it completed before I die.” People around the area are inspired by this man’s story and they recount, “I travelled almost 25 km with my friends just to get a glimpse of this structure. The efforts put in by him is really commendable,” Zakir Ali, a resident of Pahasu.