July 17th, 2010|
Haji Ali Mosque ( Mumbai )
image credit : raymond chenon
Haji Ali is a venerated tomb (dargah) of the Muslims. Not only from Mumbai, people from all parts of India come to pay homage to this mosque. Located on an island off the shoreline of Worli, Haji Ali Mosque looks stunning amidst the blue waters of the sea. It also makes the most popular landmark of Bombay. In 1431, the mosque was built by Haji Ali – a rich Muslim merchant, who gave up all worldly charms before going to the pilgrimage of Mecca.
image credit : Bad Photos of Foreign Places
As per the legends, Haji Ali left this world during his journey to Mecca and a coffer carrying his body hovered back to Mumbai. Other stories state that the great saint drowned at the place, where the mosque stands at present. On Thursdays and Fridays, the shrine is visited by at least 40,000 pilgrims. Irrespective of faith and religion, people visit the ‘dargah’ to get the blessings of the legendary saint.
The edifice is a brilliant specimen of the Indo-Islamic style of architecture. Built on a small island, the mosque is sited about 500 yards from the shoreline, in the middle of Worli Bay. This island is connected to the Mahalakshmi area by a narrow walkway, which is not even constrained by railings and is prone to sea waters during high-tide. Consequently, you can reach the mosque only during low-tides.
The walkway, offering 500-yard-walk, is the highlight of this expedition, where the touch of cool waters and pleasing breeze altogether will make this a divine experience. Sprawling in an area of 4,500 meters, Haji Ali Dargah has a tomb that is always covered with a brocaded red and green sheet, supported by a delicate silver frame. The marble pillars inside the main hall are decorated with multihued mirrors and embrace the ninety-nine names of Allah.
June 26th, 2010|
Mecca Masjid (Hyderabad)
image credit : Azgar Khan
Mecca Masjid is the oldest and the biggest of the mosques situated in Hyderabad city. About 10,000 people can offer prayers in this mosque at a time. It is said that Mohammad Quli Qutub Shah began the construction of the Masjid in 1617 but the Mughal Emperor Aurangazeb completed the construction in 1694. The Mecca Masjid of Hyderabad is located just 100 yards away from the famous and historic Charminar.
image credit : Muzammil Khamgaon
The name of the mosque has an interesting short story behind it. It is believed that some bricks were brought from Mecca and inserted in the walls of its main arch. Hence it came to be known as Mecca Masjid. There are fifteen arches that support the hall of the mosque. Three walls of the great hall have five arches each. This huge hall is 75 feet high, 220 feet wide and 180 feet long. No wonder it can accommodate about 10,000 people at a time during worship. It is said that about 8000 workers had been employed to construct this grand mosque. The mosque took 77 years to be completed.
image credit : aupeter100
Innumerable sermons from the Quran (the holy book of Muslims) have been intricately depicted on the arches of the Mecca Masjid. You can have a quiet and serene moment with yourself near the man made pond, which has soothing blue water. There are seating arrangements at the edges of the pond and it is believed that if a visitor sits on it, the person will surely visit Hyderabad again. There is a room in the courtyard of the mosque that stores ancient and holy relics. It is believed to contain the hair of Prophet Mohammed.
image credit : RahluR
June 22nd, 2010|
Kabuli Bagh Mosque Panipat ( New Delhi )
Kabuli Bagh Mosque, built in 1526, is an impressive structure located at Panipat, a historical town situated on the banks of the Yamuna. Panipat is about 92 km north of New Delhi.
image credit : snjr22
Panipat, the battle city is also a famous and interesting place in the pages of history. Without any surprise, just two kilometers away from this city exists the Kabuli Bagh Mosque. The then Muslim Ruler Babur had built it and named it after his wife Kabuli Begum. Babur constructed this mosque in order to commemorate his victory over Ibrahim Lodhi. After six years, Humayun defeated Salim Shah and got a platform called Chabutara Fateh Mubarak made around the mosque. It bears an inscription dating back to 1527 AD.
Babur erected this mosque after the first battle of Panipat to commemorate victory over Sultan Ibrahim Lodi. The mosque is housed inside an enclosure having octagonal towers at its corners. The building has its entry on the north, which is made of bricks with red sandstone facing. The entrance has a lintel bracket-type opening encased in a huge arch. The spandrels are decorated with arched recesses covered in rectangular panels.
The main prayer hall of the mosque has annexes on sides, which are crowned with hemispherical domes sitting on low drums. Its high facade, divided in panels, is plastered with lime. A masonry platform, the Chabutra-I-Fateh Mubarak, constructed by Humayun (the eldest son of Babur), bears an inscription dating back to 1527.
There are chambers on two sides of the mosque. In addition to this, there is also an inscription in Persian that runs along the parapet. The main prayer hall is square and has annexes on sides. Its high facade is divided in panels and plastered with lime. Each annex constitutes of nine bays. These bays are crowned with hemispherical domes sitting on low drums. The age and climate ravage the structure to an extent. Kabuli Bagh Mosque is now protected as a heritage building.