The story of the conquest of Chittagong by the Mughals is related to the Andarkilla of Chatgachhar in Chittagong. This fort was the abode of Mug and Portuguese pirates. When Umed Khan, the son of Shaista Khan, entered the inner fort on January 27, 1666 AD, it became known as “Anderkilla”. To commemorate the conquest of Chittagong, Shaista Khan built the “Andarkilla Shahi Jame Mosque” here in 1667 AD on the orders of Emperor Aurangzeb.
In 1723, another ruler of Chittagong, Nawab Yasin Khan, built another pucca mosque on a hillock on the south-eastern side of the hill near the Jame Mosque. Putting “Kadam-Rasool” in it, the mosque became important to the general public and Anderkilla Shahi Jame Masjid became depopulated. In 1761 AD, therefore, the East India Company started using this mosque as a warehouse for keeping ammunition. The mosque was reopened to Muslims in 1885 at the request of the historian Hamidullah Khan.
Since the construction of this mosque in 1667, this mosque of Anderkilla has become a pilgrimage place for the followers of Islam in Chittagong. The Imam / Khatib of this mosque was appointed by the Awlad Rasul (R) of the Holy Medina. As a result, this mosque became popular in a short time. Needless to say, worshipers from Chittagong and its environs used to come to this mosque every Friday to offer prayers and there is a precedent of people gathering from Cox’s Bazar and Chittagong Hill Tracts on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan. The decision of this mosque on the question of fasting,
Fitra and Eid moon sightings were inevitably followed by the people of Chittagong at all levels. The architecture and structure of the Andarkilla Jame Mosque was built in the Mughal style. Its location on a small hill about thirty feet above the plains. According to the design of the main mosque, it is 18 yards (16 m) long, 7.5 yards (6.9 m) wide and each wall is about 2.5 yards (2.2 m) thick. The west wall is made of burnt clay and the other three walls are made of stone. The roof is covered by a large dome in the middle and two small domes. Of its four octagonal towers, built in 1666, the two at its rear now exist. The mosque has three entrances in the east and one each in the north and south total 5. Although the mosque has three arches, the middle and largest arch is usually used. It is to be noted that the construction of the mosque is strategically a reflection of the historic Jame Mosque of Delhi, which gives a new dimension to the development of Muslim architecture in the Chittagong region. The mosque is also called the Stone Mosque – “Jame Sangin ” because it is built using large stones in the style of the Delhi Jame Mosque. This mosque is not only architectural but also artistic. Because there is an inscription-based Jesab installation in Chittagong to commemorate the Muslim victory, Among them is the inscription on the body of Andarkilla Jame Mosque. At the entrance of the main building of the mosque, the Bengali translation of the Persian inscription in white letters engraved on the black stone stands: “O sage, tell the people of the world that today the 2nd Kaaba has been established in this world. Which was established in 1078 AH (1766 years). The name of its founder is also found in this inscription. In this case, it can be said that all the inscriptions found in this mosque are similar to the architectural architecture of the “city of Raqqa” in Syria.
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Andarkilla of Chat Gachha in Chittagong, Bangladesh
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