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Khairul Manzil Masjid

Location: Opposite of the Purana Qila and the Delhi Zoo entrance on the western side of Mathura Road
Time to Visit: Open on all days
Preferred Timings: Sunrise to sunset
Admission Fee: Free and open to all
How to Reach: Tourists can either take local buses from various points within the city to reach this monument, which is located near the Mathura Road or they can hire auto-rickshaws and taxis or metro rail.
Photography charges: nil
Nearest Railway Station: Nizamuddin Railway Station
Nearest Metro Station: Central Secretariat
Functional Metro Station: Central Secretariat
Nearest International Airport: Indira Gandhi International Airport
Time required for sightseeing: 1 hour
(All data as of August 2005)

Located opposite the Purana Qila and the Delhi Zoo entrance on the Western side of Mathura Road, Khairul Manzil Masjid was built in 1561 by Maham Anga, one of the most influential wet nurses of the Mughal Emperor Akbar. She was the mother of Adham Khan, a nobleman and a general in Akbar's army. Adham Khan’s tomb is in Mehrauli, and is built in the Lodi style. According to the historian Percival Spear, Maham Anga was the foster-mother of Akbar, and ruled the Mughal Empire for some time when Akbar was a boy. The Masjid was built with the assistance of Shiha-bud-Din Ahmad Khan, a powerful courtier and friend and relation of Maham Anga.

Considered one of 'the most auspicious of houses', this 16th-century mosque is made of rubble covered with plaster and have five arched openings in its prayer hall. The main features of the structure are an imposing gateway of red sandstone on the east and double-storeyed cloisters, which were used as a madrasa (Islamic School). There is a dome at the central bay of the prayer hall while the other bays have been roofed with vaults. It is believed that originally the facade of the prayer chamber was profusely decorated with enameled tiles. The central arch of the prayer chamber contains the inscription that the mosque was built by Maham Anga.

Sher Shah Gate
Next to the mosque in the north lies the baronial Sher Shah’s gate, believed to be one of the gates of the extensive city of Delhi built by Sher Shah in front of his citadel of Purana Qila. The gate lies west of the Purana Qila or Old Fort. Also known as ‘Lal Darwaza’ or red gate, it is believed to have been the southern gateway of the city. The gate is built with rich red sandstone with some use of local gray quartzite. It seems later, a series of apartments fronted by a verandah were provided as an arcade, where the local people established shops, adjacent to this gate into the city.

Nearby Tourist Attractions: Nizamuddin’s Shrine, Atgah Khan’s Tomb, Mirza Ghalib’s Tomb, Chaunsath Khamba, Nila Gumbad, Purana Qila, Delhi Zoo, Sabz Burz, Nili Chhatri, India Gate, Ashokan Rock Edict, Kalan Masjid.

Nearby Places to Eat: Karim’s at Nizamuddin is famous for kebabs and there are many roadside food stalls, which serve Islamic delicacies. Hotel Oberoi in the vicinity, Sweet Corner and Nathu’s in Sunder Nagar Market, Flavors in Defence colony, and Eatopia at Indian Habitat Center in Lodi Road are some popular eateries nearby.

Nearby Shopping Venues: Sunder Nagar Market (antiques, jewelry, brassware), Connaught Place (jewelry, books, art galleries, leather goods and the list goes on) Central Cottage Industries (merchandise and curios), Janpath (clothes and low priced gifts, souvenirs and curios) and Palika Bazaar (electronic items).

Last Updated On: 2011/07/04