300-year-old masjid which hid the Peshwa cannons
The small space was washed away in the 1962 floods of Pune. It used to be a secluded area and a good place to pray and meditate.pune Updated: Jul 20, 2017 13:56 IST
Situated in the bylines of Kamgar Putala Vasahat, Topkhana Masjid is a quiet and hidden gem of the city. The name comes from the fact that the Peshwas would store their cannons and cannon balls in this area. That is how the name for the place came about.
Yusuf Imam Shaikh, trustee, Topkhana Masjid Trust shared, “It is a 300-year-old Masjid, which was a shanty, where Hazrat Manzoor Hussain Shah Kadari would pray and reside. The small space was washed away in the 1962 floods of Pune. It used to be a secluded area and a good place to pray and meditate.”
In 1994, a new building was built on the premise to accommodate more people and devotees. Arif Bhagwan, ex-president of the trust added, “It was converted into a 600 sq cm space and then eventually into the building you see today. The masjid is called Topkhana because here the Peshwas would store cannons and it was a secret spot for their weaponry. Jangli Shah Baba resided here until he had a dream of moving to JM Road. That is when he asked Hazrat Manzoor to take over this space.”
Hazrat Manzoor Hussain Shah Kadari has a dargah a few steps away which is also popular in this area. It is adjacent to an equally old Sai Bab Mandir. Yusuf added, “Legends have it that Sai Baba would also offer prayers at the Topkhana Masjid.
The masjid is open to all till a certain limit and Yusuf is present to guide you through. “We are a happy community living in harmony with every religion here. We offer five times namaaz at the mosque and have a yearly celebration of children completing the Quran Sharif.”
Where: 54, Dengate Bridge, Kamgar Putala Vasahat, Shivajinagar Kamgar Putala Vasahat, Shivajinagar Pune
Restrictions: Open to all (up to a certain section of the mosque)