Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Hyderabad's Mecca Masjid

Mecca Masjid Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad is one of the oldest and the biggest masjids of India. Muhammed Quli Qutub Shah began building it in 1617 under the supervision of Mir Faizullah Baig and Rangiah Choudhary. The Mughal emperor Aurangzeb completed the construction in 1694. It took 77 years to come up as the magnificent edifice we see today. Like many other ancient buildings in the city, the mosque is a granite giant with awe-inspiring innards. The main hall of the mosque is 75 feet high, 220 feet wide and 180 feet long, big enough to accommodate ten thousand worshippers at a time.

Mecca MasjidThis is a snap of the Masjid as viewed from the Charminar which is just 100 yards away from Mecca Masjid. The beautiful clouds with the blue sky in the background, which are a Hyderabadi specialty make a fine picture.

I had missed out at visiting the Jama Masjid on my last visit to Delhi and so I was very keen to visit this one. It is believed that the Mecca Masjid is one of the top ten largest masjids in the world. This close up photograph with the people in it might give you a sense of the size of this magnificent structure.

Mecca Masjid
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.

Mecca Masjid This snap shows an exquisitely graceful, rectangular, arched and canopied building housing the marble graves of Asaf Jahi rulers from Nizam Ali Khan to Mehboob Ali Khan and their family. It is possible that this structure came up during the rule of the Asaf Jahs because it contains the tombs of the Nizams and their family. At both ends of this resting place for the Asaf Jahs and very much a part of it, are two rectangular blocks with four minarets each. The Charminar and its surrounds are extremely crowded, old city locations with hawkers, sellers, buyers, tourists, policemen all seemingly congregating at the same location. Amidst all this hustle bustle, the masjid seems to be an oasis of peace and calm.
Mecca Masjid

This is a frontal view of the Masjid which has lots of pigeons flying around the small lake in the front and nesting in the numerous minarets of this worship place.

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.

Being very near to the Charminar, it is recommended to keep a trip to the Mecca Masjid at the same time at which you visit the Charminar and the Chowmohalla Palace. It is also advised to keep away from Mecca Masjid during times of communal tension.
Most days of the year though, 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. Dunno about you, but as far as Hydi goes, I am bewitched.

1 comment:

  1. history part well-covered ! thank you for tat .. will make me visit again if i forget :-D

    P.S. - plz try out many perfumes(Desi attarwala) shops outside masjid if ya true blue shpopper !



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