New Delhi, India — Due to heavy monsoon rains in New Delhi, the central dome of a 200-year-old mosque in the city has come crashing down.
The 200-year-old red sandstone Mubarak Begum mosque was built in 1823 by a courtesan. It is not among some of the iconic heritage sites in the historic old quarters of the city.
The extremely flooding in the city has also caused the death of two people and leading to the collapse of many houses and trees.
“At around 6.45 am [01:15 GMT], the dome collapsed with a huge sound,” the mosque’s 45-year-old imam Mohammad Zahid told Anadolu Agency.
“I was sleeping in my room inside the mosque when I heard thunder. We have since locked the mosque. But we continued offering namaz [prayers] and teachings in the open courtyard.”
Zahid has been the muezzin (who calls for prayers) and imam of the Mubarak Begum mosque since 2004. He revealed that the mosque was last repaired in 2016.
He said that he has ever since wrote several letters to the office of the Waqf Board, a government institution that looks after Muslim structures in the country, to draw its attention to the deteriorating structure and to seek their help to repair the roof.
Zahid wrote again on Monday to the Delhi Waqf Board’s office, asking for the restoration of the damaged structure and some officers had visited the mosque from the board to assess the damage.
Although the Waqf officials gave no reply to Anadolu agencies queries about the issue, a member of the Waqf Board, Himal Akhtar told the Indian Express newspaper that conservation of the historic mosque was a priority.