NORTH INDIA-Meerut,Jama Masjid,Daurala - 6

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Last updated - Wednesday, 13-Jul-2005 21:39:36 EDT

This is the Jama Masjid. It is not even possible to take an unobstructed picture of this, as it is surrounded by construction. The mosque was built by Hasan Mahmuddi, a minister of Mahmood Ghaznavi, in 1019 AD (older than the Kutb Minar ). That makes it the 1st Masjid in North India ?. ( Source Fodor's India Guide or The Lonely Planet ). The Gazette for this region says some Buddhist statuettes were found nearby during digging sometime in 1901. Budhist artifacts mean that this site existed in the BC era.
I had written oldest in India. Thanks to Dr. Sabu for the correction.

Interesting sideline

It seems Kerala has had ancient connections with the Arab world and the oldest Masjid in India is there dating from around a few years after the Prophet's death . Thanks to Dr. A.N. Sabu for that e-mail.

CheramanMasjid in India at Kodungaloor near Trichur in Kerala Dr.A.N.Sabu (e-mail :

"...Regarding the establishment of mosques in Kerala, you might know about Kerala's trade with many foreign nations from time immemmorial. You might also know that Kerala has the oldest Christian Church and Jewish Synagogue in India. There is an inscription in Cheraman Jama Masjid in Kodungalloor giving AH 7(ie,CE 628),moreover in other masjids in Kerala, namely the Thottukkal Masjid of Ponnani there is an epitaph dating to CE 629 and in the Kasragode Jama Masjid there are inscriptions dating to CE 642& 644. (A short History of Kerala-K.V .Krishna Iyer page14;History of Muslims -V.A.Ahmadul Kabir page-6). Do visit and sites might help you to know more about Kerala's Muslim connection."

A Tablet in St. John's Church. Recounting an action a few years after its construction. Do read the poem. One wonders how many of the East India Company shareholders died or were wounded "for Britain and God". I am sure the Stapleton of Combermere viewed the occasion from a safe distance, with the latest Nikon 30X Telescope. There is no clue about why God would want them to invade Bharatpur. Shades of September 11 perhaps.

  Bharatpur fell only after 2 or three attempts in as many years.  It is worth noting that in those days British guns may not have been at all superior than that of Indian Constituencies. These muzzle loaders on both sides were just a little better than Bows and arrows. They did have better range and accuracy, though. The Canons could break open fort walls but were too sluggish to hurt the foot soldier or cavalry. Besides most Indian states had European mercenaries in the Armies. In fact Bharatpur forces were commanded by a European, who probably had many other Europeans under his command, yes including British mercenaries. Walter Rhinehardt of Sardhana fame was the commander of Bharatpur forces around the latter half of the 18th century ( 1760 or so ).
  And yes Begum Sumru of Sardhana turned up uninvited at this attack. Her army ( about 5000 strong ) had not "seen" action for a number of years. This was a case of have army will travel ... She was 73 at that time.

to the memory

These gallant soldiers & non-commissioned officers & privates of HMs 14th Regt of foot, who fell or who subsequently died of wounds, received during the Siege & at the storming of the fortified town & fortress of Bhurtpore, under the personal command of his Excellency, the Right Honble Stapleton Lord Combermere G.C.E Commander-in-Chief of British India. In the Latter end of December 1825 and on the memorable 18th January 1826,

L. Gray serving as 
Qtr Mstr Serjt 11th N.I
I. Belcher,
I. Abbotts,

While darkness veiled the vaulted sky, 
in solemn silent march they trod, 
Eager to shout their Battle Cry,
& prompt for war for Britain and God, 
& when the Earthquake signal shock gave
angry summons to advance
& firm and stern as planted rock, 
Each hero braved the hostile lance,
Remember Soldier nothing could
uphold the warrior spirit
like the hope of heaven and wouldst
thou bear thyself with front as bold, 
believe in Him , 
in whom by Sins forgiven, 
He shall support thee in more awful scene, 
When Louder trumpets clang ,
shall rouse thine ear, 
When Nature's Universal wreck is seen
& saints victorious shout and sinners sigh with fear.

This tablet here inscribed with the sanction of Major General Sir Thomas Ryne H.M.C.E in whose division and under whose immediate eye  HMs 14th Regt. had the honour to do their duty,  Is placed as a mark of Esteem  and of faithful remembrance, by their surviving comrades.

The humble but ubiquitous rickshaw, whose contribution to the Indian Economy perhaps equals those of many large industries. Note the front wheel is not on the ground.

The huge carcass of an accidented Tata Sumo being transported by a Rickshaw. It is being taken to the denter's place. By the time they are through with it, it will not remember what hit it. I am sure we have the largest non-corporate recycling industry in the world.

Daurala Sugar works at the height of the crushing season

Daurala Sugar works. About 15km north of here. A unit of the DCM group and a high capacity sugar mill . The glistening white steam from the the smoke stacks looks great especially when the sky is a clear blue, after a rain. The roads are full of trucks often loaded with sugarcane going to one of the many mills in this area. See more of Daurala,

Hi ! Do write back with reactions /suggestions /objections...

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Ashoka pillar, Mutiny monument Alahabad bank Gandhi Bagh House near Sadar Thana Sophia Jama Masjid cantonment. Railway Station The Mall Jump to other pages here

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