How To Find A Slice Of Persia On Mohammed Ali Road

    Umerkhadi, Mumbai

    The Road To Mughal Masjid

    There isn’t much that hasn’t already been written and sung about the bustling, furiously energetic metropolis of Mumbai. So, when we decided to spend a few weeks of our India tour reDiscovering the city we live in, we thought it would be a challenge to find new things to see and do. How wrong we were. The Mughal Masjid is an oasis of tranquility in the middle of the bustling Mohammed Ali Road. Google and random street vendors off Mohammad Ali Road aided in us finding the 156-year-old Mughal Masjid.

    A Sea Of Blue

    With well-maintained lawns, a pond filled with fish, and gleaming blue tiles brought from Persia, the mosque is an oasis of calm in the otherwise overcrowded Bhendi Bazaar. The thing that first hits you and surrounds you, is the mosaic of striking blue tiles that make up the entire mosque and its boundary walls, which is also what attracted us to this particular mosque. Built in 1860 by a wealthy Iranian merchant and maintained by a trust set up by his family, the mosque is beyond a place of worship. Once inside the community area of the mosque {we were not allowed inside the prayer hall}, it was easy to leave the city at the doorstop and bask in the peace and serenity that the beautiful space provided. One could just imagine a time when old men would sit and debate the Quran and catch up on their daily news and gossip surrounded by nature and their thoughts.

    The intricate work on the front boundary wall of the Masjid is truly stunning and some of the most beautiful we have seen anywhere in India.

    Dilip Kumar And Hamaams

    The very chatty guard gave us a tour of the mosque, along with some interesting tidbits, including the fact that the mosque used to be frequented by none other than the very famous Dilip Kumar during his heyday. We also learnt that right next to the mosque is a surviving and functioning Iranian hamaam, which is now used as a modern day public bathing house. Once done with the grand Mughal Masjid, we promptly went in search of the hamaam, and peeked in, only to be shooed away as there were men bathing. We waited outside and tried to come up with clever ways to go back in to take pictures. It then started raining and we opened our umbrella and walked back into the madness of Mumbai, in search of a cab driver and our next destination.

    Timings: The mosque opens at 5am for morning prayers

    Check out more from The Rediscovery Project here.

      Umerkhadi, Mumbai