Telangana government and Aga Khan Trust are working to restore the monument ahead of rains
It is a race against the monsoon as Hyderabad’s 17th century Badshahi Ashoorkhana, famed for its resplendent tile work, is restored to its original finery.
The sprawling structure, which turns into a house of mourning during Muharram, is located in a narrow bylane of the old city. On Sunday, workers were busy plastering a high wall with brownish lime mortar in the blistering sun, using the cover of a blue tarpaulin.
About Hyderabad’s 17th-century Badshahi Ashoorkhana:
The 400-year old Ashoorkhana was built by Muhammed Quli Qutub Shah.
It was a house of mourning, where large congregations of Muslims gathered in memory of the martyrdom of Imam Hussain during the month of Muharram.
The building consists of a Kaman, Naqqar Khana (where ceremonial drums are beaten), Niyaz Khana (where visitors are fed), Sarai Khana (place to rest), Abdar Khana (drinking water is stored), the chabutra (platform) and a guard room.
During the rule of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, in 1178 Hijri (about 1764 AD), the Ashoorkhana was converted into a bandikhana. For 80 years, it was used as a stable where horses were kept before it was restored as a place of worship by the then mutawalli Mir Nawazish Ali Khan.
The eight wooden pillars were reconstructed and the alams were reinstalled. During this time, the main entrance, Bab-e-Faiz-e-Imam-e-Alamiyan, was also constructed.