About Jama Masjid
Jama Masjid of Delhi is the largest mosque in India. The Jama Masjid stands across the road in front of the Red Fort. Built between 1644 and 1658, Jama Masjid is one of the last architectural works of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan.
On the west is the rectangular prayer hall, which measures 61 meters by 27.5 meters.The eastern gate was once reserved for the Emperor. Wide staircases and arched gateways greet the visitors of the mosque. The relics of the Prophet and the Holy Koran are enshrined here and its courtyard can hold up to 25,000 worshippers at one go. Designed by Ustad Khalil, the great sculptor of his time, it was built at an astounding cost. It has a splendid façade of eleven arches decorated with marble frames.
Panels with inscriptions in black and white marble are placed above the arches. The central arch of the façade is higher than the rest giving it a perfect proportion. Jama Masjid (the mosque of Friday), Delhi is the country’s largest and perhaps its most magnificent mosque. It stands across the road from Red Fort. The great mosque of Old Delhi is the final architectural extravagance of the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan with a courtyard capable of holding 25,000 devotees. The mosque measures 65m by 35m, and its court forms a square of 100m.
Built in 1656, it is an eloquent reminder of the Mughal religious fervour. worshippers enter through this gateway and on the occasion of the two annual Id festivals to mark the end of Ramadan – Id-ul-fitr and Id-ul-Adha. There is also a fine view of the Red Fort from the eastern gateway. The closet in the North gate of the mosque contains a collection of Muhammad’s relics – a copy of the Quran written on deer skin., a red beard-hair of the prophet, his sandals and foot prints installed in marble.
The general public enter by either this gateway or sought gate.Its spacious courtyard holds thousands of the faithful who offer their prayers here.The largest mosque in India, the Jama or Jami Masjid was built between 1644 and 1658 during the reign of Shah Jahan, the most prolific of the Mughal builders. Originally known as the Masjid-i-Jahanuma, or “mosque commanding view of the world”, the mosque is built of colossal proportions and has a courtyard, which can accommodate 25,000 devotees.
Made of sandstone and white marble, the mosque has three gateways, two 40m high minarets and four towers. Beyond the intimidating entrance, is a vast courtyard measuring nearly 100msq. It is flanked by pillared corridors which run all along the courtyard and have domed pavilions in the middle on either side.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. The Jama Masjid is covered with intricate carvings and has verses inscribed from the holy Koran.
The grand Red fort (Lal Qila) stands on the eastern side of the Jama Masjid. These steps leads to the courtyard of the mosque. The steps that leads to the eastern gateway has 35 steps, to the northern gateway has 39 steps and to the southern gateway has 33 steps which are made of red sandstone. Out of the three gateways the eastern gateway was used by emperors to enter the mosque and this gateway remains closed during the weekdays.It is said that Emperor Shahjahan built Jama Masjid at the cost of Rs.10 crore and it can be called as the replica of Moti Masjid in Agra.
It combines the best of Hindu and Muslim styles of architecture. The main prayer hall of the Jama Masjid is made up of high cusped arches and marble domes. The cabinet in the north gate of the Jama Masjid contains a collection of Muhammad’s relics – the Koran written on deerskin, a red beard-hair of the prophet, his sandals and his footprints, implanted in a marble block. On the west is the rectangular prayer hall, which measures 60 meters by 28 meters. It has a splendid façade. It has as many as 12 arches decorated with marble frame same as in the case of Domes.
If you want to know about the history of the place, the inscriptions are there to inform. There are other things inscribed too, such as the cost of building the mosque, the architect and the builder, which in this case is one Nur Allah Ahmed. The chief cleric, Imam Bukhari, is the direct descendant of the Mullah who came from Bukhara to inaugurate the Jama Masjid. He came on 23rd July 1656, at the invitation of the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan.
A whole way of life, a microcosm of quintessential India resides in the shadow of this age-old monument, on its steps, in the narrow streets, narrating a tale of India’s rich cultural heritage. The prayer hall, measuring 61m by 27.5m, is quite a marvel. It is has a magnificent façade of eleven arches, the central one being higher than the others and serving as the entrance. It is topped off by three magnificent domes which are richly ornamented and have black and white marble stripes – much like the Nizamuddin Dargah.
The main Imam in this mosque is the direct descendent of the original and first Imam appointed by Emperor Shah Jahan. One can enter inside the mosque bare-footed only, with the head covered and wearing ‘lungi’ (a traditional wear of Muslims, worn during offering prayers to the Lord). During his reign, Emperor Shah Jahan built many other important mosques in Agra, Ajmer and Lahore.Visitors can climb the southern minaret on nominal charge. Be careful at the top, as the Jaalis are fragile.
The views are just wonderful as one can see the whole Old Delhi and the impressive Red Fort. Women are not allowed to go alone to the top of the minaret.A cupboard is located near the north gate of the Jama Masjid. It contains a collection of prophet Muhammad’s relics – a red beard-hair of the prophet, Korans written on deerskin, his footprint and his sandals.
Annual Event and Special Event or Festivals
The mosque is at its best during Muslim festivals of Id-ul-Fitr and Id-ul-Zoha when thousands of devotees at a time offer their prayers in the courtyard. There is a festival and carnival like atmosphere in the area and Islam looks at its most impressive in this great urban mosque, on a special occasion like Id.Also Celebrated many Muslim festivals are celebrated by the mosque.
Nearby Tourist Attractions
Jama Mosque is in old delhi so there are many famous tourist attractions is very nearly from the mosque.Nearby tourist attractions include Red Fort, Chandni Chowk, Salimgarh Fort, St James Church and Raj Ghat and many more.
Nearby Restaurant to Eat
Here is the very famous area so there are many hotels and eating places are very closed from the mosque like Karims, famous for its kebabs. Ghantewala sweet shop, food stalls near Jama Masjid, and Paranthewali Gali, specialize in Indian street food. In Daryaganj try the Moti Mahal, Flora and Peshwari Restaurant for local flavor or Natraj Hotel for a decent Indian meal, or Chor Bizarre at Broadway Hotel for authentic Kashmiri Cuisine in a heritage ambience.
Nearby Shopping Markets
In delhi there are many famous markets and shopping malls but in Chandni Chowk, literally ‘Silver Street’ and traditionally the place to shop for silver jewelry and utensils. You can also shop here for traditionally embroidered clothing, exotic food and curios. Old gramophone players and photographic equipment are also a popular purchase from Chandni Chowk.
Chatta Chowk for traditional and contemporary jewelry and handicrafts), Nai Sarak for books, Chor Bazaar for electronic goods and Daryaganj book market, a Sunday attraction, is not to be missed.Also some famous shopping malls and markets are very closed from the mosque.
General Fact about Jama Masjid
- Location:500 meters west of Red Fort, near Chandni Chowk in Old Delhi
- Time to Visit: On all days from Sunrise to Sunset
- Preferred Timings:mmer/ Winter: 7.00 am-12.15 pm & 1.45 pm till sunset/ 8.30 am-12.15 pm & 1.45 pm till sunset; Muslim ladies: After Fazar Prayers (after dawn) till Maghrib Prayers (between sunset and twilight), all round the year except during Ramadan (Ramzan) when they are allowed entry from Fazar Prayers to Maghrib Prayers
- Day Closed:Open all days
- Admission Fee: Free and open to all except during prayer timings. Tourists should cover their knees as well their arms and remove their shoes before entering the mosque. Cloth to be draped around your limbs or feet, is available at the entrance and is provided on request.
- Photography Charges:Citizen/foreigner: INR 20/ 150
- Parking: Free and open to all
- Nearest Railway Station:Old Delhi Railway Station
- Nearest Metro Station:Kashmiri Gate
- Nearest International Airport:Indira Gandhi Intenational Airport
- Time required for sightseeing:Approximately 2 hours
- Famous As :India’s largest mosque
- Designed By :
- Best Season : February-March
- Note : Please open your shoes before entering the mosque. The shoe wallah should be tipped Rs10.
- Do’s and Don’t: Do not enter during prayer time. Muslims and Non-Muslims both are expected to wear proper clothes befitting the dignity of the Mosque.