Sidi Saiyyed Mosque History
The Mughals had ruled over the city of Ahmedabad for quite a long period of time. The Gujarat Sultanate also constructed certain buildings inspired by the Mughal Architecture. The architecture of the city has many prominent structures depicting the Mughal Architecture. The grandeur of these places is what makes them unique. One such architectural marvel is The Sidi Saiyyed Mosque in Ahmedabad which is well known for its latticework (‘Jaali-Work’) in the entire country.
Let us have an insight of The Sidi Saiyyed Mosque. As mentioned earlier the ‘Masjid’ or Mosque is famous for its ‘Tree of Life’ Jaali or latticework done on the falcate arched windows. It is a small mosque in an eventful part of Ahmedabad but has a great significant among the tourists as well as the locals.
History of the Sidi Saiyyed Mosque
The Sidi Saiyed Mosque was tailored by the last Sultanate of Gujarat, which got completed in the last year of its rule before the Mughals from Delhi defeated them and took over the state. Gujarat Sultanate can be ascribed for much of the most incredible Mughal architecture. The Mosque was built in the year 1572-73 by Sidi Saeed or Sidi Saiyyed who was an Abyssinian in Bilal Jhajar Khan followers, who had been a general in Sultan Shams-ud- Din Muzaffar Shah army belonging to Gujarat Sultanate.
Sidi Saiyyed came to Gujarat from Yemen and later served Sultan Nasir-ud-Din Mahmud III. He built this magnificent monument during the reign of Sultan Muzaffar Shah III, the last ruler of Gujarat and hence the mosque is named after this nobleman. The mosque was used as a Government office during the British rule. In 1880 CE paper casts of the carved screen were taken and two wooden models were made for the Museum of Kensington and New York.
Architectural Style of the Mosque
The Sidi Saiyyed Mosque is built with yellow sandstone and the mosque’s skillfully carved Jaali screen windows represent the style of Indo-Saracenic type. The front of the mosque had two minarets on the sides which have now fallen and only the base of each remains; while the back wall is where all the ‘Jaali’ are. The arch of the central window in the mosque, which could have offered a view to another Jaali has been covered with a stone wall because it remained incomplete because of the invasion of Mughal emperors during those times, therefore, it could not be completed as per the plans of Gujarat Sultanate.
The main attraction is of two bays which edge the central passageway having stone slabs reticulated in a style of intertwined trees along with palm motif and foliage. The main Jaali called the Siddi Saiyyed Jaali has been an inspiration to the design of Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad logo.
The Jaalis: An Unmatched piece of Art!
There is a total of eight arched windows which are adorned with these stone carved intricate Jaalis. It is believed that there were 45 craftsmen who worked on these Jaalis. However, just when it was getting completed, Ahmedabad fell into the hands of the Mughal Emperors, and henceforth, the last window in the center of the back wall was left without a jaali.
How to Reach to the Mosque?
It’s very easy to locate the mosque; the mosque is very close to Lal Darwaza, the main bus stand for local buses in Ahmedabad.
Timings of the Mosque
Friday is for the mass prayers; however, tourists are requested not to make a visit at that particular time. The mosque opens early in the morning and closes the late evening.
The appearance of the mosque is imparted a peculiar yellow color, which is commonly found in the shrines. Besides this, there are majestic floral designs accompanied by architectural works formed in an inimitable way which distinguishes this mosque from another mosque of this area as well as from other mosques throughout India. It is an epitome of the beauty of architecture and it is very overwhelming to watch how merely a simple stone can be carved and created into a wonderful piece of art and come out as splendid as it is.
The Siddi Saiyyed Mosque is a must visit in the city of Ahmedabad.