Located within the Qutub Minar complex at Mehrauli in Delhi, Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque (translating to ‘Might of Islam’) was built by the Mamluk ruler Qutub-ud-din Aibak. Yet another feather in the cap of Delhi, the monument is the first mosque to be built in the city after the Islamic conquest of India and is known as a celebration of the Muslim Rule. Also known as Jami Masjid, the construction of the mosque began in 1193 AD; and the ancient mausoleum is also the oldest surviving testament of the Ghorids architecture in the Indian subcontinent. Subsequent additions were made to the monument later, during the reigns of Iltutmish and Alauddin Khilji. Initially, the idea of the mosque was conceived as a stand-alone structure but later, Qutub Minar was constructed along-side simultaneously as a ‘Minar of Jami Masjid” with the idea for the priest to perform azaan- call-out for namaz.
The architecture and technique of Quwwat-ul-Islam mosque resemble the structure and pattern of other monuments at the time built by the same ruler like Adhai Din ka Jhopra and Ajmer Mosque. It is believed that the entire Qutub Minar complex was established after demolishing temples and Sanskrit schools at the spot. A Persian inscription found at the site suggest that it required the destruction of twenty-seven Hindu and Jain temples to furnish the material for the construction of this mosque. Originally built with red sandstone, grey quartz and white marble, the building is currently in ruins; and due to decades of negligence and abandonment in the maintenance, a few layers of plaster have given way to reveal Hindu carvings on the original stone. Although in a dilapidated state now, the mosque is cherished as one of the most magnificent works of architecture in all of the world.