Photos: Tughlaq-era Begampur mosque set to get a facelift

Tucked away in a quiet corner of Sri Aurobindo Road in South Delhi, is a large rubble-built mosque that gives the surrounding village its name. The Begampur mosque, with its striking row of domes, had recently been damaged when a part of a dome came crashing down in January. Following the incident, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has decided to take up this Tughlaq-era mosque for conservation, which is scheduled to begin in the next 10 days.

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST 8 Photos
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A view of the Begampur mosque complex from above. Tucked away in a quiet corner of Sri Aurobindo Road in South Delhi, is this large rubble-built mosque that gives the surrounding village its name. The Begampur mosque, with its striking row of domes, had recently been damaged when a part of a dome came crashing down in January. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

A view of the Begampur mosque complex from above. Tucked away in a quiet corner of Sri Aurobindo Road in South Delhi, is this large rubble-built mosque that gives the surrounding village its name. The Begampur mosque, with its striking row of domes, had recently been damaged when a part of a dome came crashing down in January. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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The surrounding residential colony seen from the roof of the Begampur mosque. Following the incident, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has decided to take up this Tughlaq-era mosque for conservation, which is scheduled to begin in the next 10 days. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

The surrounding residential colony seen from the roof of the Begampur mosque. Following the incident, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has decided to take up this Tughlaq-era mosque for conservation, which is scheduled to begin in the next 10 days. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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The Begampur mosque is one of the seven built by Khan-i-Jahan Junan Shah, who was 14th century ruler Feroze Shah Tughlaq’s prime minister. The structure, which rises from a high plinth, consists of a large courtyard, enclosed by arched cloisters on the sides and a three-aisle deep prayer hall. The façade of the prayer hall is broken by 24 arched openings. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

The Begampur mosque is one of the seven built by Khan-i-Jahan Junan Shah, who was 14th century ruler Feroze Shah Tughlaq’s prime minister. The structure, which rises from a high plinth, consists of a large courtyard, enclosed by arched cloisters on the sides and a three-aisle deep prayer hall. The façade of the prayer hall is broken by 24 arched openings. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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The monument currently wears a dilapidated look about it — stones missing from its arches, tilted pillars, cracks on its walls and terrace, as well as eroded plasterwork. Further, according to an ASI official currently working on the conservation plan, the mosque is frequented by anti-social elements, making it unsafe for those living nearby. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

The monument currently wears a dilapidated look about it — stones missing from its arches, tilted pillars, cracks on its walls and terrace, as well as eroded plasterwork. Further, according to an ASI official currently working on the conservation plan, the mosque is frequented by anti-social elements, making it unsafe for those living nearby. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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The most characteristic feature of the mosque though are the rows of domes surmounting the structure. “It is possibly the most unusual mosque in the city today, because of the thin row of eggshell-shaped domes, which is a unique template for mosques in this part of the country,” said historian Rakhshanda Jalil. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

The most characteristic feature of the mosque though are the rows of domes surmounting the structure. “It is possibly the most unusual mosque in the city today, because of the thin row of eggshell-shaped domes, which is a unique template for mosques in this part of the country,” said historian Rakhshanda Jalil. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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“The immediate plan is to strengthen parts of the domes and roof that are in poor condition. But we are also making a long-term conservation plan, which will be carried out over two or three years. During this period, we will focus on restoring the domes, flooring, and also ensure encroachments are prohibited,” said Gunjan Srivastava, superintending archaeologist, ASI (Delhi circle). (Amal KS / HT Photo)

“The immediate plan is to strengthen parts of the domes and roof that are in poor condition. But we are also making a long-term conservation plan, which will be carried out over two or three years. During this period, we will focus on restoring the domes, flooring, and also ensure encroachments are prohibited,” said Gunjan Srivastava, superintending archaeologist, ASI (Delhi circle). (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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Rubble lies amid the ruins of the Begampur Mosque. Speaking about the fate of the mosque in recent years, Jalil said “After Independence, several migrants had made the mosque their home, as was happening in many other monuments in Delhi.” (Amal KS / HT Photo)

Rubble lies amid the ruins of the Begampur Mosque. Speaking about the fate of the mosque in recent years, Jalil said “After Independence, several migrants had made the mosque their home, as was happening in many other monuments in Delhi.” (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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“The occupation of the Begampur mosque continued for a very long time, before the ASI forcibly removed them. That explains much of the vandalism of the monument in the next few years, as people from surrounding areas started using parts of its masonry for personal use,” Jalil added. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

“The occupation of the Begampur mosque continued for a very long time, before the ASI forcibly removed them. That explains much of the vandalism of the monument in the next few years, as people from surrounding areas started using parts of its masonry for personal use,” Jalil added. (Amal KS / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON FEB 11, 2020 10:48 AM IST
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