The Taj Mahal is a mausoleum in Agra dedicated to Mumtaz Mahal, the wife of Emperor Shah Jahan, who was grief-stricken when she died during the birth of their 14th child in 1631. The Taj Mahal is the finest example of Mughal architecture, combining elements from Persian, Turkish, and Indian architectural styles. Melanie Stetson Freeman/Staff/File
The Bahá'í House of Worship in Delhi, known as the Lotus Temple, was completed in 1986 and serves as the Mother Temple of the Indian subcontinent. It is a popular tourist attraction and has won numerous architectural awards and been featured in hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles. B Mathur/Reuters/File
Begun in 1574, the Golden Temple of Amritsar, Punjab (officially called The Harmandir Sahib), is the holiest Sikh shrine. The temple (or gurdwara) is a major pilgrimage destination for Sikhs from all over the world, as well as an increasingly popular tourist attraction. Munish Sharma/Reuters
Built during the second half of the 16th century by the Emperor Akbar, Fatehpur Sikri (the City of Victory) was the capital of the Mughal Empire for about 10 years. Located near Uttar Pradesh, Agra District, the complex of monuments and temples includes one of the largest mosques in India, the Jama Masjid. Keren Su/China Span/Newscom/File
Jaisalmer Fort is one of the largest forts in the world, situated in Jaisalmer city in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It was built in 1156 AD by the Bhati Rajput ruler Rawal Jaisal, from whom it derives it name. The fort's sandy yellow color has given it the unofficial name, 'Golden Fort.' Newscom/File
Indian Muslims pray at the Jama Masjid mosque, one of India's largest, during morning prayers on Eid al-Adha in New Delhi on Nov. 17, 2010. Muslims around the world celebrate Eid al-Adha, or feast of sacrifice, by slaughtering sheep and cattle in remembrance of Abraham's near-sacrifice of his son. Kevin Frayer/AP/File
A conductor leads an Indian military band during a dress rehearsal on Aug. 13, 1997, for the nation's independence day celebration at Delhi's historic Red Fort. The Red Fort is a 17th century fort complex constructed by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the walled city of Old Delhi (in present day Delhi, India). Ajit Kumar/AP/File
The Hawa Mahal ('Palace of Winds') in Jaipur was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh in the form of the crown of Krishna, the Hindu god. It has 953 windows called jharokhas decorated with intricate lattice work to allow royal ladies to observe everyday life without being seen, since they had to observe strict 'purdah' (face cover). Tim Makins/Lonely Planet Images/Newscom/File
Located in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand, Badrinath is the holiest town of the Char Dham pilgrimage, undertaken by 600,000 Hindu pilgrims each year. The Badrinath temple is the main attraction in the town. Garry Weare/Lonely Planet Images/Newscom/File
The Qutub Minar is the world's tallest brick minaret, with a height of 237.8 feet. Built in the early 13th century, the Qutub Minar is one of the earliest and most prominent examples of Indo-Islamic architecture. It is surrounded by several other ancient and medieval structures and ruins, collectively known as Qutub complex. Saurabh Das/AP
Dal Lake in Srinagar, which has drawn visitors from Mughal emperors to Beatles star George Harrison, has shrunk from 9.65 square miles to 5.02 square miles since 1980 because of the separatist rebellion, neglect by authorities, silt, weeds, and other developments, Kashmiri environmentalists say. Danish Ismail/Reuters
Indian dancers perform a routine in front of the Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple during its inauguration ceremony in New Delhi on Nov. 6, 2005. The temple, a 100-acre complex of Indian art, culture, and heritage, which is built on the banks of the River Yamuna in India's capital, is made of pink sandstone and white marble. Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Images/Newscom/File
Pedestrians walk past as an armed policeman stands guard in a newly-built watch tower in front of the India Gate in New Delhi on July 14. The Indian home ministry ordered security heightened across the country after triple explosions in Mumbai on July 13. Adnan Abidi/Reuters
Followers of India's three main religions - Islam, Hinduism, and Sikhism - have balked loudly at cultural slights this week. There's a reason for it, and it's not all politics.
ByScott Baldauf, Staff writer
No one likes to have their religion slighted. This is especially true in India, where there are thousands of gods, and tensions are close to the surface when it comes to ill-considered comments about religion.