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Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India

Jama Masjid is the largest mosque in India. This great mosque is situated in Old Delhi with a courtyard capable of holding 25,000 devotees, which are more than any other mosque in India. It was begun in 1644 and ended up being the final architectural extravagance of Shah Jahan, the Mughal emperor who built the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort. Initially Jama Masjid was known as the Masjid-i-Jahanuma, meaning World Reflecting Mosque in Persian. Constructed by 5000 workers over a period of six years this mosque is a major attraction in the city. The Jama Masjid can be seen from any region within 5 kilometer of its radius as it was located on a place which was on a higher ground in comparison to the other buildings of the area.

The Jama Masjid was designed as the main mosque of Shahjahan. Towering over Old Delhi, the ‘Friday Mosque’ was Shah Jahan’s final architectural opus, built between 1644 and 1658. The tower of the Jama Masjid is made up of five distinctive storeys. The first three storeys of the Jama Masjid tower are made of red sandstone and the fourth one is made of marble, while the fifth is made of sandstone. There are 3 doorsnorth, east and south. The northern gate of the mosque has 39 steps. The southern side of the mosque has 33 steps. The eastern gate of the mosque was the royal entrance and it has 35 steps.  The main building is facing west. It has four angle towers and two minarets standing 40m high, and is constructed of alternating vertical strips of red sandstone and white marble.  Two lofty minarets, 130 feet (41 m) high, and containing 130 steps, longitudinally striped with white marble and red sandstone, flank the domes on either side. The minarets are divided by three projecting galleries and are surmounted by open twelve-sided domed pavilions. On the back of the mosque, there are four small minarets crowned like those in the front. A sum of Rs 10 lakhs was spent on the construction of the Jama Masjid.

Visitors should remove their shoes at the top of the stairs. Inside the mosque, there are certain things to watch, like the Quran written on deer skin, a red beard-hair of Prophet Mohammad, his sandals and his footprint in a marble slab.  The only prayer session where non-Muslims may be present is at 7.45am. One has to go to the imposing gateways of this beautifully glorified mosque along the wide stairs. The structure was situated on a high platform so that its magnificent facade would be visible from all the neighboring areas.  There’s no charge to enter the mosque, but you’ll have to pay the camera charge whether you want to use your camera or not.

How to Visit 

Delhi, the capital city of India is connected to the other neighboring states and countries via air, road and rail. Tourists can either take local buses from various points within the city to reach this place. Any bus coming to ‘Jama Masjid’ or ‘Red Fort’ will drop you here. If you want to come by Metro then get down at ‘Chawri Bazaar’  Metro station and take a rickshaw to reach Jama Masjid.