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MAKKAH MOSQUE, INDIA

Hyderabad, Telangana, India The mosque is divinely connected to the holy city Mecca through artefacts and sacred relics.
Islam

Makkah Mosque is located in Hyderabad, Telangana, India. It is one of the oldest and largest mosques of India and also listed as a heritage site. The construction of the magnificent mosque was started by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah of Qutb Shahi Dynasty who ordered bricks to be made from the soil of the holy city Mecca. This act not only spiritually connected the mosque to Mecca, but also provided the basis for the name of the mosque.. The calm and spiritual atmosphere of Makkah Mosque attracts people irrespective of any religion.

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Overview

History and Belief

The construction of Makkah Mosque was started by Qutb Shahi dynasty’s Sultan Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah in 1617 (Sultan of Golconda which is now known as Hyderabad). He ordered bricks to be made from the soil of Mecca as it is the holiest place for Muslims. The bricks were used to build the central arch of the mosque. A legend says that Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah invited the devout elders to lay the foundation of the mosque but no one came forward and thus, he laid it by himself. He was a pious ruler and it is said that the Sultan (ruler) never missed  the midnight Namaaz (prayer) since the age of 12.

Makkah mosque was built under the guidance of Choudhary Rangaiah and Daroga Mir Faizullah. The façade which is three arched is said to be built from a single granite stone. It took five years to just quarry it with almost 600 men and 1400 oxen working on it.  Over the course of 77 years, about 8000 men worked to complete the mosque. The construction finally completed under the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in the year 1694.

Makkah Mosque is said to house more sacred relics apart from the bricks. Some believe that a hair of Prophet Muhammad was brought from Mecca and is kept in a room in the courtyard.


Architecture

Makkah Mosque is located near the famous monument of Hyderabad called Charminar. The architecture of the mosque is similar to Charminar and also Golconda Fort which is located nearby. Makkah Mosque is exquisitely designed, enough to accommodate about 10,000 worshippers in its prayer hall itself. The prayer hall is 75 feet high, 220 feet long and 180 feet wide. The roof is supported by fifteen arches on three sides; the pillars being carved out of granite. An arched library lies above it. The fourth side consists of Mihrab which indicates the direction of qibla (the direction towards which Muslims turn to pray). Above the central arch there are small red bricks which are believed to have come from Mecca.

A gateway leads to the entrance of the court near which is a huge pond with two stone benches on its sides. A legend says that if one sits on these benches, he/she is bound to return and sit on them again in his/her lifetime. Inside the mosque, one can see the enchanting Belgian imported crystal chandeliers. The doors and arches are etched beautifully with verses from the holy book Quran. The mosque is situated between two huge octagonal columns made out of a single slab of granite. These columns have arched balconies with canopy crowned by a dome and a spire which are on level with the roof of the hall. On the roof of the main mosque are the ramparts which are made of granite planks in the shape of inverted conches perched on pedestals.

The Qutb Shahi architecture has included floral motifs and friezes throughout the building which shows the attention paid to details. Makkah Mosque also consists of an arched gallery with a dome and a spire on the top. It consists of the tombs of Nizams and Asaf Jahi rulers. At their graves’ end are two rectangular blocks with four minarets which are higher than the minarets on the cornice of the mosque. The minarets consist of circular balconies with low ornamental walls and arches. Above them, an octagonal inverted platter is located from which the rest of the minaret connects to a dome and a spire.

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3 interesting Facts & Myths about MAKKAH MOSQUE, INDIA

  • 1. The construction of a part of Makkah Mosque was done using bricks brought from Mecca, which is considered a holy place in Islam, to establish a divine connection between the two places.

  • 2. It is believed that a hair of Prophet Muhammad was brought from Mecca and is kept in a room in the courtyard.

  • 3.The benches located near the pond are supposedly enchanted. It is believed that once a person sits on them, he is bound to return and sit on them once again in his lifetime.

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Programs

Daily programs

The daily Namaaz (prayer) is conducted in Makkah Mosque five times a day in accordance to Islamic traditions.

Special programs

Important festivals like Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Zuha are celebrated here.
Jumma’h (Friday) is considered a holy day by Muslims and people travel especially to offer Namaaz after noon.

Travel

How to travel

The nearest airport to Makkah Mosque is Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad which is 25 KM away. The nearest railway station is Kachiguda Station which is about 5 KM away. Makkah Mosque is also close to Charminar Bus Stand from where buses are readily available. Several hotels are available in the area near the mosque. Local food, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian, is also available outside of the mosque.

Hyderabad is the capital city of the state Telangana and is close to Warangal (145 KM away) and to Ananthagiri Hills (82 KM away). The best time to visit Makkah Mosque is from October to February when the weather is pleasant.

VISITING DAYS/HOURS

Makkah Mosque is open all days of the week from 04:00 AM to 09:30 PM throughout the year for everyone.

Travel Tips

  • There is a strict dress code to be followed to enter Makkah Mosque. Western clothes are typically not allowed and one must dress modestly.
  • Women and also male tourists are not allowed inside the main prayer hall.
  • Tourists should avoid visiting on Friday as being a holy day for Muslims, it is crowded.
  • Bird lovers can feed seeds to the friendly pigeons inside the mosque.

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Nearby Attraction

  • Charminar, located on the banks of River Musi, is a popular attraction which was built by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah in 1591. It is a monument and a mosque which has become the global icon of the city Hyderabad.
  • Chowmahalla Palace is a historical monument meaning four palaces which was the official residence of the Nizams of Hyderabad. The lush gardens, a small car museum and the grand architecture makes one feel at peace.
  • Birla Mandir is a temple dedicated to Lord Venkateshwara and was built by Birla. The temple is made from pure white marble in a blend of Rajasthani, Utkala and Dravidian architectures. The place is filled with positivity and spirituality.
  • Salar Jung Museum is one of the three National Museums of India which captures the era of Nizams and displays items of historical value. A famous artefact is a clock which continues to work since the 19th century.
  • Golkonda Fort is listed as an archaeological treasure by the Archaeological Survey of India and is known for its magical acoustic system. It showcases the history of the city since the Kakatia regime. A major attraction which takes place at the fort is the light and sound show narrating history.

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