A 400 year old mosque – forgotten

“Jayantipur” “Bor” “Majid” of Kuwaritol Kaliabor is one of the oldest mosques in India established in 1570 AD. C. It is in its 437th year of existence. The historical reference dates back to the year 1532 when General Turbak of the Mughal army was defeated by an Ahom king “Swargadeo Suhunhmung” in the great battle of Hatbor and Duimunisila in Kaliabor. 900 Muslim soldiers were taken prisoner.

These soldiers were later known as “Moria”. A part of them settled in Jayantipur, Kaliabor. During the latter part of the Ahom rule, this Muslim community in Moria established a mosque made of bamboo and straw and in AD 1570 a concrete structure was erected in its place. Another structure was erected in AD 1575 at a distance from the original mosque. Legend has it that a skilled Hindu bricklayer was brought from Dhaka in Bangladesh for the construction. He was an expert in Islamic architecture and with his guide the mosque took shape. Decorative materials were brought from as far away as Rajasthan. Each and every one of the villagers contributed to the construction. Even today popular songs abound in reference to the legend of the labor contribution. One of the popular songs goes like this.

Pitre Momin, Pitre Bhai

Ji Nipite, Pithar bhag Nai.

It means: contribute your work, oh brothers.

Those who do not work will not get bread.

The architectural construction testifies to the communal harmony between Hindus and Muslims. Although it is a mosque, the structure looks like a ‘Namghar’ (a Hindu place of worship). The architectural decoration inside the mosque with pieces of glass is unique in Assam. Here you can see another community integration of Hindus and Muslims in Assam. Between the two mosque structures, there is a functioning ‘Namghar’ without any controversy.

Currently the Mosque is waxed and needs immediate restoration. The villagers of “Jayantipur” are trying their best to get the job done, but the quality and quantity of the job need skilled hands and huge funds, which is impossible for a village. If the government or any other agency takes the initiative to restore and popularize the mosque, this site can be an important palace for religious tourism.

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