International desk, Apr 13: A storm has damaged two minarets located at different entry gates of the iconic Taj Mahal in the northern Indian city of Agra.Officials said that winds blowing at 130kmh (80mph) caused the 12ft (4m) pillars to collapse.
The four longer minarets that surround the main structure remain intact.
The 17th Century mausoleum attracts about 12,000 visitors a day and is one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions.
Authorities said that work had begun to restore the damaged structures.
India’s official recorded history says that Mughal ruler Shah Jahan built the Taj Mahal in memory of his queen, Mumtaj Mahal.
The monument’s complex structure of white marble domes and minarets inlaid with semi-precious stones and carvings is considered the finest example of Mughal art in India
The Archaeological Survey of India, the custodian of the country’s monuments, said in January that the Taj Mahal was at risk of losing its sheen and structure due to increased pollution levels in Agra.