Jama Masjid Travel Guide, Information, Tips and Best Information
Jama Masjid Amidst the rush and chaos of Central Delhi, lies the peace and tranquillity of the largest mosque in the country. The 'Masjid-I Jahan-Numa' or Jama Masjid as it is more commonly known, means "World Reflecting Mosque." It was the last of Shah Jahan's impressive collection of architectural undertakings, after the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort. The mosque hosts thousands of pilgrims each year on the holy occasion of Eid to offer special Namaz in the morning. With a capacity of twenty-five thousand people in the courtyard, Jama Masjid is arguably the largest mosque in the country. Unfortunately, non-Muslims are not allowed inside the Masjid during Namaz offerings. Evenings are surreal when the steps leading to the mosque are filled with food and book stalls.
Jama Masjid is situated in the older part of Delhi, now called Chandni Chowk and surrounded by beautiful Mughal structures. It took a huge construction cost of one million rupees at the time, five thousand workers and six years (1650-1656) to complete. The purity of warm welcome can be felt here. To reach the entrance one needs to climb 121 steps. The massive central dome is an outstanding example of Islamic architecture. J Sadaullah Khan who was the Wazir (prime minister) during Shah Jahan's rule supervised the construction of the mosque.
Designed and planned by Ostad Khalil, Jama Masjid was commissioned on July 23, 1656, when Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan moved his capital to Delhi from Agra after the death of his wife. Syed Abdul Ghafoor Shah Bukhrail, an Imam from Uzbekistan, inaugurated the mosque. A 'madrasa' near the southern end of the mosque was destroyed during the revolt of 1857, and the mosque was confiscated with the intention of demolition, but the British government had to retreat due to severe protests and opposition. It is almost a replica of Moti Masjid in Agra.
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