Khirki Masjid is one of the few mosques in the country which are covered for most parts. Lying as one of the mosques in the ancient city of Jahanpanah (connecting Tughlaqabad & Siri), it lies close to the Satpula gates & was built by Firoz Shah Tughlaq’s Prime Minister, Khan-i-Jahan Junaan Telangani.
Not only is the mosque built on a different beat than its counterparts of that era, but it also has a rare blend of Hindu & Islamic style, built on a cross-axial platform with a tight geometry, almost like a mini fortress.
Instead of a one big open courtyard, the mosque has four smaller square courtyards measuring 30 Ft x 30 Ft. Due to the modern day construction found all around, little sunlight filters in through the lattices on the upper floors. Another interesting aspect of this mosque is its design of the terrace. Partitioned into 25 squares of equal size, each square has 9 domes on each side, measuring 81 in all & these square blocks are alternated by 12 flat roofs, giving a very distinct shadow upon the interiors. One can take the eastern flank stairs to reach the roof & a visit is imperative to comprehend the mathematical beauty of its design.
Khirki Masjid is one of the most complex & elegant constructions of the Tughlaq era, which was otherwise more attuned towards simple & rugged constructions. It is said to be a precursor to the Lodi & Mughal styles that were to evolve later on. Although there is minimal decoration both on the inside & outside, the geometrical intricacy of design is a marvel in itself.
Many parts of the mosque have started crumbling, partly due to the encroachment & the consequent lack of sunlight. The ASI tried its hand at some restoration work but using incorrect mixtures for making the lime mortar to save time has left its marks & stains. The space around the mosque has been badly encroached by the modern day Khirki Village & the entrance has to be scouted from the opposite end of the Select Citywalk Mall in Saket.
There are kids seen using the limited green space for cricket, so don’t be perturbed if you catch a fielder posted in one of the turrets. The interiors are often badly encroached upon by miscreants, so the early & late hours of the day should be avoided.
The Saket Metro is the nearest station & a visit can be clubbed with the nearby monuments such as the Bijay Mandal, Begumpur Mosque & Satpula.
So go explore this beautiful mosque of windows!