Insects pose threat to inlay work at India's Taj Mahal

LUCKNOW: Archaeological experts say insects from a polluted river near the Taj Mahal are marring the 17th century monument of love's intricate marble inlay work by leaving green and black patches of waste on its walls.

Workers have been trying to scrub the walls clean every day, but the regular scrubbing can damage the intricate floral mosaics and shiny marble surface.

Bhuvan Vikram of the Archaeological Survey of India says authorities are looking for a permanent solution to the problem, which is caused by mosquitoes proliferating in the polluted Yamuna River.

He said Sunday that the river has become so stagnant, it no longer supports fish that once kept insect populations in check.

The Taj Mahal, one of India's most cherished tourist attractions, is located in the northern city of Agra.