Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Star Mosque (Tara Masjid) in Dhaka

Star Mosque (Tara Masjid)
Star Mosque (Tara Masjid)

Tara Masjid is a historical mosque in Dhaka. It is an ancient mosque built in the early eighteenth century. The mosque is located on Abul Khairat Road in Armanitola, Old Dhaka.

The mosque was built by Mirza Ghulam Pir, the grandson of Mir Abu Sayyid, a wealthy man of Dhaka. At that time this mosque became well known as the mosque of Mirza Sahib. At the time of construction, the mosque was of three dome style. After the death of Mirza Golam Pir in 180, in 1926, Ali Jan Bepari, then a local businessman in Dhaka, renovated the mosque. At that time he added a verandah to the east of the mosque and decorated the whole building with star motifs with precious Japanese and English colored tiles.

Although the mosque has now been converted into a five-domed mosque, it is actually a three-domed mosque. The mosque later came to be known as Star Masjid because of the abundance of designs in the decoration material from the dome to the walls of the mosque.

The mosque was renovated in 1986. At this time an old arch was demolished and two domes and three new arches were made. In all, the number of domes now stands at five. As a result, the space of the mosque was expanded.

Currency
Star Mosque in Bangladeshi Taka (Currency)

Five arched paths have been created to enter the mosque. These arches have many grooves and rise from four octagonal pillars. Completely mosaic design inside and outside the mosque. Small pieces of porcelain plates, cups etc. and pieces of glass have been used in this ornament. This method is called ‘ Chini (sugar) tikri’ or work of Chini (sugar) granules.

Vase, flower bush, rose flower, a flower on a stalk, moon, stars, constellations and Arabic calligraphic inscriptions are engraved on the design of the mosque. The ornamentation of this mosque is dominated by flower plants growing from vases in the interior, pendants at the top of the arch and walls. Glazed tiles with a view of the famous ‘Fujisan’ of Japan are notable on the verandah.  Numerous blue stars are placed in round white domes. The ‘motif’ of the stars is predominant in the whole design; That is why the mosque is known as Tara Mosque.

indoor of Star Mosque (Tara Masjid)
indoor of Star Mosque

However, it is a little difficult for the visitors to find the mosque in the crowded alleys and noise of old Dhaka. But if you stand in front of it, the annoyances of the mind will fly away like camphor. The green shadow of peace fills the mind of the visitor. Its ornate walls and domes reveal the beauty-loving minds of the Mughals before our eyes. When you enter the mosque, there is a fountain shaped like a star in the open field in front.

The road to the mosque is also paved with mosaic tiles on the green grass around it. These have multiplied its beauty. There is no way not to be fascinated by the designs on the body and interior of its five domes. The combination of herbs and different flowers will lose your mind during the Mughal period. Looking at the crafts with fascinated eyes, you may think that you are standing in the court of a Mughal king. Every day hundreds of visitors from Dhaka and its environs are fascinated by its beauty. Every time more than a hundred worshipers participate in the prayers here.

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