Palaiya Jumma Palli, Kilakarai, Ramanathapuram
Palaiya Jumma Palli (The Old Jumma Masjid of Kilakarai) or Meen Kadai Palli is a mosque in Kilakarai, Tamilnadu, India. Built in 628-630 AD, it is believed to be one of the oldest mosques in the world and along with Cheraman Juma Masjid in Kodungallur, Kerala, the first mosque in India. It has an Islamic heritage of more than 1000 years. It is located in Kilakarai, an ancient port town in the South Indian state of Tamilnadu known for its Islamic culture.
It was built in 628–630 AD and was re-constructed in 1036. The mosque along with the others in the town is one of the greatest examples of Dravidian Islam architecture. Old Jumma Masjid of Kilakarai is the most ancient place of worship in the entire country and is the fourth-oldest mosque in the world.
History & Construction
Constructed by the Yemeni merchants and trade settlers of the pre-Islamic period in Pandiya kingdom ordered by Baadhan (Bazan ibn Sasan) Governor of Yemen at the time of Prophet Muhammad, after they accepted Islam in 625–628 AD at the time of Kavadh II son of Khosrau II (king of Persia). This mosque was rebuilt in the 11th century after saheed war.
It is the oldest mosque of India. Bazan Ibn Sasan, Tamim Ibn zayd al Ansari, Ibnu Batutah, Nagoor Abdul Cadir, Ervadi Ibrahim Sahib, Sultan of Ottoman Murad and other most famous Islamic scholars visited the mosque and Ibnu Batutah said in his travel notes "it's the place of where most Arab settlers live and he surprised to see them living as in Arab land".Structure
The mosque looks like a temple from outside and inside, but does not have any idol carving on the pillars or walls. There is the Mihrab on the wall like all mosques for identifying the direction of prayer, which is the only proof that it is a mosque. Elaborate carvings are present on the surfaces of the walls of the mosque and lofty beams are also present in the 'Pallivasal' of the mosque. The mosque bears a Tamil architectural look, which implies a distinctive architectural pattern.
This historical Mosque of great antiquity should be well maintained and preserved for the future generation because it represents the legacy of early Arab traders who had close link with this part of land once ruled by Pandyas and Nayaks.
Other Mosques in Kilakarai
Amir ul Muminin Abu Baker Siddiq Palli (Masjid):
Kannadi Valeeyullah Dargha:
Kulangarai Appa Masjid:
Sathakathullah Appa Dargha:
There are lot many transports available to reach Kilakarai/Keelakarai. From Kanyakumari, people can take direct bus which passes through Ervadi 8kms near Kilakarai. From Madurai, there are frequent buses available either directly to Kilakarai or to Ramanathapuram. From Ramanathapuram people can take bus to Kilakarai. It's approximately 16 kms by Road.
From Rameswaram, people can get direct bus to Kilakarai. From Chennai to Kilakarai private and public transportations are available to reach Kilakarai. From Bangalore, people can get direct bused to Kilakarai. There are few government buses reaching Ramanathapuram or Rameswaswaram from Bangalore.