Hyderabad Man Bringing out Stories of Abandoned Mosques in India

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the Jama mosque of Jalmana village was once also used as Guruduwara

Mohammed Mirza, currently based out of India, has been writing about the mosques on Wordpress blog site named “Mosques of India” which also has pages on social media sites – Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

Waquar Hasan | Clarion India

NEW DELHI – A Hyderabad man has been bringing out the stories of the historical mosques on social media. These mosques have been abandoned in a dilapidating condition due to negligence of the state machinery or the absence of Muslim population in those areas.

Mohammed Mirza, who is currently based out of India, has been writing about the mosques on Wordpress blog site named “Mosques of India” which also has pages on social media sites – Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. He refused to give more personal information about himself saying he wants the story of the mosque to be highlighted rather than the person who is behind it.

Mirza, who describes himself as a “history lover”, has been writing about the mosques for the last one year. In the social media posts, he writes the historical facts about the mosques if any, their architectures and their present condition along with posting photos.

Mirza told Clarion India that he started this project last year when he got plenty of free time during lockdown. He is fond of history and has read a lot about it since long but during the free time he was introduced to some Instagram pages related to Indian history. It inspired him to do stories about the mosques in India.

“Basically, I developed an interest in history for the last 10 years. In Hyderabad, we have a lot of historical monuments like Qutb Shahi Tombs. A lot of them are in the form of mosques. I used to come across historical structures lying in utter ruins. People around them don’t know about those structures. I used to take photographs of those historical sites,” he said.

When Mirza started bringing out stories related to the mosques in India, he knew that he did not have all the information and photographs related to all the mosques. Therefore, he urged his followers to post photos and information related to the mosques under the hashtag #MosquesOfIndia and tag him, then he will feature them. This is how he was gathering information about the mosques, he told Clarion India.

Recently, he has started bringing out stories of abandoned mosques in Haryana under the hashtag #AbondonedMosquesOfHaryana. After doing eight parts of this story series, he concluded saying “There are so many historic mosques in Haryana that lie abandoned and it is impossible for us to cover all of them. That’s why we have decided to conclude this series with this large Jama mosque in a village called Jalmana”.

According to him, the Jama mosque of Jalmana village was once also used as Guruduwara. But after a Guruduwar was built closeby, the mosque is no longer being used for Guruduwara.

“We hope that through this series we have been able to bring the plight of these mosques to the notice of the state heritage department, ASI and Waqf Board,” he noted in that story.

Commenting on the situation of historical monuments in Haryana, he noted “Haryana is blessed with so many historical monuments but there is perhaps no other state in India where historic monuments are left to the vagaries of nature like they are in Haryana”.

He brought out the story of a Lucknow mosque named “Panditain Ki Masjid” which was built by a Brahmin lady Rani Jai Kunwar Pandey for her friend Khadijah Khanum. Khanum was the wife of the first Nawab of Awadh Amin Sa’adat Khan Burhan-ul-Mulk.

So far, Miraz has put out 300 posts related to the mosques through his Instagram handle ‘Mosques of India’ where he has 5,926 followers. On Facebook with the name ‘Mosques of India’, he has 2,000 followers.

While gathering all this information, he observed that in different parts of the country, there are many mosques abandoned and inactive due to absence of the Muslim population. No one pays attention to them. With regard to architecture, he found that different architectures have been applied to build mosques by different people in different areas.

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