It was built to fight the Mongol menace and means Refuge of the World. Except for some ruins not much of the city survives today.
- Khirki Mosque.
- Begampur Mosque.
- Masjid Kalu Sarai.
- Kalan Masjid (Hazrat Nizamuddin).
- Masjid Firoz Shah Kotla.
- Masjid Wakya (Lahori gate).
- Kalan Masjid (Turkaman gate).
- There is a dispute whether Telingani was indeed the builder of these mosques but i am going with the public view)
andheron men khanDar sotaa padaa hai
abaabiilon ke lashkar jaagte hain
The mosque measures 307ft by 295ft and included within its walls a madrasa and a treasury.
The central pishtaq is supported by pillons on both sides and houses the central mehrab.
In Islamic architecture, a rectangular frame around an arched opening, usually associated with an iwan, a vaulted space used as an entrance.
The mehrab : the only part of the mosque in some semblqnce of order ans maintenance.
ye aur baat ki ‘aKHtar’ haveliyaa.n na rahiin
khanDar men kam to nahiin apnii aabruu raushan
It has been built in the austere style of rubble masonry. Sir Syed describes it as strong and ugly . No doubt it is sans any embellishment we are used to seeing in medieval buildings but there is a grandeur in its starkness to me
Some of the walls have fallen to let the sun in
har shaKHs yahaan gumbad-e-be-dar kii tarah hai
aavaaz pe aavaaz do suntaa nahiin koii
The mosque contains 64 domes, with one central one with a height of 9ft.
The domes today afford a place for lOcals to hang out in and at dusk to ‘party’.
khaDaa huun zer-e-falak gumbad-e-sadaa men ‘muniir’
ke jaise haath uThaa ho koii duaa ke liye
On the roof.
A view from the top. The five domes in the rear belong to the ladies mosque
The Begumpur Mosque is known as the first Indian example of the “Brhatmukhi” mosque type: at the center of the 24 arches on its main façade, an extremely large arch stands out, flanked by massive tapering pylon-minarets.
Resting after the climb up the steep, narrow and dark stairs to the roof
Up close with the main dome
This is the mehrab in the Mullah Khana : possibly a rare ladies mosque attached to Begumpur. Unfortunately its used as a toilet by the locals. I had to cover my nose to overcome the stench there and having failed to see clearly in the dark stepped on filth and dirtied my shoes.
What was once a mehrab now bears testimony to some Raakhee’s self obsession or her admirer’s stupidity.
The inside of the ladies mosque.
I cannot describe my feelings at seeing such deep dosdain for our architectural heritage and magnificent places of worship.
A mute spectator to what must have once been glory days