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definition of jummah masjid mauritius and synonyms of jummah masjid mauritius (English)
The Jummah Masjid is a mosque in Port Louis, Mauritius dating from the 1850s, with substantial additions built through the 1890s. It is located on the Royal Road, and is described by the Ministry of Tourism’s guide as one of the most beautiful religious building in the country.
In 1852, Haji Joonus Allarakia, Casseem Hemeem,Joosub Satardeenah, Elias Hadjee Hamode, Hajee Abdoollah Essack, Hajee Ab doorahim Allanah, Ismael Ibrahim and Omar Yacoob – all prominent members of the mercantile community of Port Louis – got together and purchased, in their own name and on behalf of the Muslim community of Mauritius, two properties situated in Queen Street, Port Louis, for the aggregate sum of Rs 6,800.00. The deeds of purchase, dated October 20, 1852, stipulated, among other things, that the Muslim traders had made the purchases:
(… jointly and severally, in their own names as well as on behalf of the entire Muslim congregation of Mauritius from which they hereby declare having received special powers. The purchasers declare that the sum of money paid for the present purchases does not belong to them personally but to the whole Muslim congregation of Mauritius.)
On one of the properties stood a house which was converted into a temporary prayer house pending the construction of a Mosque. However, the foundation of the future Jummah Mosque was thus laid. Ismael Jeewa, who was a trader and also quite knowledgeable in Islam, led the prayers at the temporary prayer house. The following year, that is, 1853, a Mosque of a limited size was built and solemnly consecrated. Hajee Imam Bacosse Sobedar, who was Imam of the Camp des Lascars Mosque, was called upon to trace the Mihrab (prayer niche) of the new Mosque, which came to be known for many years as the Mosquée-des-Arabes – after its founders, who were mistakenly called Arabs by the general public. The new Mosque, which could accommodate some two hundred worshippers, was the original Jummah Mosque. However, it was to undergo extensive expansion and improvements over the years and become the focus of Islamic cultural and religious life in Mauritius and very rightly become the Ja’mi or Jummah Mosque (Grand Mosque) of Mauritius and the symbol of “the faith, zeal and selflessness of those early pioneers of Islam, adequately versed in religion and high minded enough to think that no community could live without religion and no man without prayer.”
The steady increase in the Muslim population in Port-Louis soon made it evident that the Mosquée-des-Arabes was too small to satisfy the growing congregation. However, the need for a bigger Mosque could not be satisfied easily and sooner. More space meant more land had to be acquired. And for the next twenty years (1857–1877), that would be the main concern of the Managing Body of the Mosque. During that period, the properties around the Mosquée-des-Arabes that formed the quadrangle of about three-quarter acre were successively acquired by groups of generous Muslim traders in seven different lots for the total sum of Rs 134,260.00 and donated to the Mosque. In fact, in all but one of the deeds of purchase it was mentioned that the purchases were made on behalf of the whole Muslim community of Mauritius. So it came to pass that the entire block around the Mosquée-des-Arabes – bounded by Royal, New Little Mountain (now Joseph Rivière), Queen and Little Mountain (now Jummah Mosque) Streets, came under the ownership of the Muslim community. Soon plans for the expansion of the Mosque were drawn and work on the project began.
The expansion project of the Mosque generated spontaneous interest among Muslims everywhere in the island. Indeed, the entire project seemed to touch every member of the Islamic Umma’a and arouse great fervour. “We should see here”, wrote Issac and Raman in their history of the Jummah Mosque, “not only a mere human effort crowned with success but rather the unravelling of a divine design showing that those who have the fulfilment of His will at heart verily not only deserve His blessings but are also helped as promised by Him.”
The extension work on the Mosquée-des-Arabes began in 1878. The plan called for the blending of the original structure into the larger one to accommodate the growing Muslim congregation. The work called for particular skills and dexterity, notably in the moulding and plastering of the sculptural work with ornamentation—skills that could not be handled by local workers. Specialised workers were brought from India for the job as were the necessary building materials, namely: stones, lime and wood. Transportation posed no problem as several members of the Managing Body of the Mosque, headed by Haji Joonus Allarakia, were also owners of ships that plied regularly between India and Mauritius.
The crew of the Indian artisans, who did the extension works, was overseen by Ishaq Mistry, also from India. For the whole duration of the works, the workers stayed on the compounds of the Mosque “sleeping and eating under the pillared arches of the outer court.” The project took twenty years to be completed. The long delay was due either to outbreaks of disease among the workers or to shortage of materials. However, in 1895, the expansion of the Mosque was completed. Al-Hajj Jackaria Jan Mahomed, a prominent member of the Muslim community in Port Louis and of the Managing Board of the Mosque, supervised the entire expansion project which saw the small Mosquee des Arabes expand from a small fringe on Queen Street to occupy the entire block except for a small section on Royal Street, which was leased to businesses for revenue purposes. The beautiful, small Mosquée-des-Arabes became the Jummah Mosque of Mauritius. It is a magnificent work of architecture conspicuous for its bulging domes, well trimmed arches and white minarets. The skill and dexterity shown by the workers in blending intricately the old structure with the new, speak eloquently of “their outstanding ability and patience and personal devotion” to what became, to all involved in the project, a labour of love.
The expansion works entailed huge expenses which, despite the tremendous goodwill and generosity shown by the Muslims at the time to raise the necessary funds through donations, failed to meet the targeted amount. The Muslim merchants, who literally held the monopoly of trade in grains, came up with an ingenious idea to finance the cost of the project. They charged a special two per cent levy on every bag of grain over the market price. That extra duty, called the church-rate, was paid ungrudgingly by all. It was for a good cause. The levy helped raise thousands of rupees, which were remitted annually to the Mutawalli (President) of the Mosque, to pay for the expansion works.
The Jummah Mosque incorporates elements of Moorish and Munhal architecture, with its massive columns and imposing arches. In the middle of the open court stands an old Badamia (Indian Almond or Terminalia Cattapa) Tree, which is older than the Mosque itself. In fact, the tree already stood on one of the two original plots of land on Queen Street acquired in 1852. The designers of the Mosque, in drawing up the plans of the building, decided to incorporate the Badamia Tree into the overall structure of the Mosque. The Tree adds a special charm to the austere place, its huge branches providing shade to worshipers in the sweltering heat of Port Louis. And, in the evening, on clear starry nights, the feeling is as touching to-day as it was experienced in 1872 by the American Consul, Nicholas Pike:“As you stand under it (the Badamia Tree) on a clear night, myriads of stars glittering overhead, it is not difficult to fancy yourself transported to some Oriental land, where Allah alone is worshipped.”
The prayer hall of the Mosque is the same vaulted hall of the old Mosquée-des-Arabes. From the towering bulbous domes, glistening white, hung the brilliant glass chandeliers that provided lighting for over fifty years – that is, till the advent of electricity. The beautiful chandeliers can still be seen hanging in the prayer hall though the interior is now lit with fluorescent bulbs. The prayer hall is remarkable for its interior which comprises a subtle blend of Arabic and Indian motifs. The Jummah Mosque is a monument to the dedication and religious fervour of its founders, designers and builders. It has gained in stature over the years and has come to hold a special spot in the hearts of the hundreds of Muslims who come to its vaulted sanctuary every day to worship Allah (God), to meditate and seek inner peace and comfort. As the Grand Mosque of Mauritius, the Jummah Mosque, understandably, holds pride of place in the religious and cultural life of the Muslims.
The Managing Body
The managing committee is elected on a three-year basis by the members of the Sunni Cutchee Memon Society of Mauritius. After every three years of management, A new committee is voted or renewed.
The actual Mutawalli (President) is Nissar Ahmad Ramtoola the most successful president in the history of Jummah Mosque. May Allah accept his sincerity and hard working.
The Halal Department has been renewed and revived by his effort and the Jummah Masjid has certified many slaughter houses, manufacturers, industries, food outlets, restaurants etc.
During his lifetime the following activities have been produced successfully:
- Website of Jummah Masjid – www.jummahmasjid.org
- SMS System – 8786
- Jummah Masjid Halal Development
- Reading Library
- Reference Library
- Conference Room
- Jummah Masjid Facebook
- Dar ul Iftah Service
- Jummah Web TV (www.jummahtv.org)
- Social Works and many others…
His supporters were Mufti Muhammad Ishaq Qadri, Qari Muhammad Ali Fakii, Br. Ehsan Moossa, Hafiz Sameer the Lion Heart, Maulana Shameem Noorani, Br Omar Peermamode, Br. Noorani Imrit etc…
The masjids affiliated to the Jummah-Masjid
The institutional role of the Jummah-Masjid make that many Masjids (mosques) throughout the island are affiliated to it. They are under the protecteeship of the Jummah-Masjid.
Hereby is the list of Masjids affiliated to the Jummah-Masjid, along with their co-ordinates:
Names of Masjid
- Al-Noor Cassis Road, Bain-des-Dames (Maulana Fezal Ramjan)
- Syed Peer Jamaal Shah Des Bouchers road, Roche Bois (Hafiz Ackbar)
- Anwar-e-Madinah Royal Road, Piton (Qari Abdul Majeed)
- Glen Park Royal Road, Henrietta, Vacoas (Qari Naeem)
- Noor-ul-Imaan Mosque Road, Beau Bassin (Imam Fazl ur Rasool)
- Mawlana Abdool Aleem Siddiqi Hugnin Road, Stanley, Rose Hill (Imam Ataaullah)
- Noor-e-Mohammadi Mosque Road, L’escalier (Maulana Maseeh ud Deen)
- Jummah Masjid Royal Road, Rose Belle (Maulana Shameem Khodadin)
- Masjid-e-Noorani Camp-de-Masque Pavé
- Partly are from THE Jummah Masjid Website of Mauritius
- History of The Jummah Masjid
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