Jama Masjid

Jama Masjid is one of the largest mosques in India. Know more about the Jama Masjid of Delhi.
Shah Jahan, as his final architectural extravagance, built one of the largest mosques in India, Jama Masjid. It is situated in Old Delhi area of the capital. Also known as Masjid-i-Jahan Numa, it was the principal mosque of the Emperor. Owing to its huge size, it took six years to be fully complete. Situated on a high platform, the austere, yet beautiful, building was built in red sandstone, with extensive use of white marble. The pulpit of Jama Masjid has been beautifully carved out of a single block of marble. It has three gateways, four soaring towers and two minarets. The 130-ft high slender minarets of the mosque grace its impressive faade.

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. However, the greatest treasure of the Jama Masjid is, undoubtedly, the hair of the beard of Hazrat Mohammed, kept in the northeast corner of the white shrine. It also preserves his used chappal (slippers), a chapter of Koran taken from its original holy book, the canopy of his tombstone and the foot print of Muhammad on the stone.

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. The grand building of Jama Masjid has stood the test of time and stands undeterred, reminding about the glory of the bygone era. Most of the tourists coming top Delhi make it a point to visit this magnificent edifice.