MA Sheeta Chaukiya Devi Temple, Jaunpur

The Ma Sheetla Chaukiya Devi temple is quite old. The worship of Shiv and Shakti has been going on since times immemorial. History states that, during the era of Hindu kings, the governance of Jaunpur was in the hands of Ahir rulers. Heerchand Yadav is considered the first Aheer ruler of Jaunpur. The descendants of this clan used to surname 'Ahir'. These people built forts at Chandvak and Gopalpur. It is believed that the temple of Chaukiya Devi was built in the glory of their clan-deity either by the Yadavs or the Bhars- but in view of the predilections of the Bhars, it seems more logical to conclude that this temple was built by the Bhars. The Bhars were non-Aryans. The worship of Shiv and Shakti was prevalent in the non-Armyans. The Bhars held power in Jaunpur. At first, the Devi must have been installed on a praised platform or 'chaukiya' and probably because of this she was referred to as Chaukia Devi. Devu Sheetla is the representative blissful aspect of the Divine Mother: hence she was called Sheetla. On Mondays and Fridays, worshippers come here in quite large numbers. Huge crowds gather here during the Navratris.

Shahi Pul in Jaunpur

The Shahi Pul bridge is famous bridge of Jaunpur. The Shahi Pul bridge was built by Munyeen Khankhana in 1564 on the orders of Akbar during his reign. This is a one of its kind bridge in India and its carriageway is at ground level. The width of the bridge is 26 ft. with 2 ft. 3 inch wide kerfs on both sides. At each junction of adjacent spouse, pillboxes have been constructed. Earlier shops used to be set up in these pillboxes (gumtees). On a square platform in the middle of the bridge, there is a large sculpture of a lion with an elephant underneath its forepaws. It had formerly been installed in some Buddhist monastery from where it was brought and installed at the bridge. There is a mosque in front of this and there are 10 spans of the bridge to its north and 5 spans to the south which rest on octagonal pylons. It is spot worth seeing.
Shahi Pul in Jaunpur

Jama Masjid at Jaunpur

The Jama masjid height is more than 200 ft. this mosque near Purani Bazar on the Shahganj road is an important monument of the Sharki period. Jama masjid foundation has been laid at the time of Ibrahim Shah's rule and its construction was completed in various phases. Jama masjid was finished during the reign of Hussain Shah. This mosque is quite extensive, artistic and attractive and there are 27 steps to the top. Its southern gateway is 20 ft. above ground level. Its inner premises extend to 219 x 217 feet and has a gateway at each of the 4 cardinal points. The eastern gateway was destroyed by Sikander Lodhi. The outer boundary of the mosque is 320 ft. on the East-West and 307 ft. on the North-south side. The decorations, its engravings in the Egyptian style, the curves of its arches, the uniqueness of the Lotus, sunflower and rose motifs, its screens etc. are worth seeing.
Jama Masjid at Jaunpur

Architecture Jama Masjid
According to the historians and other experts, the Jami Masjid, Jaunpur, bears a great deal of resemblance with mosques that were built during the reign of Firoz Shah Tughlaq of the Tughlaq Dynasty of Delhi Sultanate. The architectural style is on the guidelines of the Atala Maasjid of Jaunpur.

The magnificent appearance of Jama Masjid at Jaunpur is heightened by a number of factors. The entire structure of Jami Masjid, Jaunpur stands on a plinth that is six meters high. The double-arched, pylon-shaped gate at the entrance presents a majestic sight. The long steps leading to the front gate are also good to view. The main portal lies in the focal point of the facade and stands about 26 meters tall and measures nearly 24 meters at the base. This was again a characteristic feature of the mosques built by the Sharqis.

The feature which can be exclusively traced in Jami Masjid, Jaunpur is a massive rectangular hall meant for prayers. This hall is flanked by tunnel vaults on its sides and is covered by a dome, measuring 11.4 meters in diameter. There are small windows in the dome that allow sunlight to enter into the interior of the Jami Masjid, Jaunpur, thus creating a splendid sight.

Another attribute of Jama Masjid at Jaunpur, which the other holy places in Jaunpur will find hard to match, are the gorgeous decorations that are visible on the walls on the interior and the exterior portions. The bracket and beam construction style is unique in itself.

How to Get There
  • Jama Masjid is 3 kilometers from the railway junction at Bhandari. 
  • By Road:- There is bus and train services from Varanasi (Benaras), which is 56 kilometers from Jaunpur
  • Lucknow and Mirzapur are the other two cities located 214 kilometers and 69 kilometers away respectively

Atala Masjid Jaunpur

Atala Masjid or Atala Mosque is a 15th-century mosque in Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh, IndiaAtala Masjid is one of the chief tourist attractions in Jaunpur. The mosque bears the evidences of the times in which it was built. The Atala Masjid is a useful specimen of mosques, not only in Uttar Pradesh but also in India.

Location of Atala Masjid
2.2 km north-northeast of Jaunpur, 7.3 km northwest of Zafarabad, 16.8 km north-northeast of Mariahu, 26.3 km west-northwest of Kirakat.

Architecture of Atala Masjid
The chief feature of Atala Masjid is that in spite of being a mosque and that too, built by the Muslims rulers, the Masjid shows a lot of influences of Hindu architecture. In fact, there is a clear resemblance of Hindu style of architecture, in the entire Masjid. The reason for such similarity is due to the fact that the Atala Masjid is situated on the site of a temple of Atala Devi. Hence the Atala Masjid, Jaunpur also gets its name from this Hindu Temple.

On the other hand, the Begampur Masjid in Delhi is also believed to have influenced the construction a great deal. The presence of niches, inclined walls, the form and structure of beams and pillars, resembles the mosques, tombs and other buildings that were built by Sultan Muhammad Shah Tughlaq and Firoz Shah Tughlaq of the Tughlaq Dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate.

The central portico of Atala Masjid in Jaunpur, India has a stately arch. Inside, there is a massive hall, which is the main prayer room. The three domes of the Atala Masjid differ in size. The 'mihrab' (the niche in the wall of the mosque, which indicates the direction of Mecca), the decorations of the prayer room as well as the two-tiered corridors are the other features of Jaunpur Atala Masjid, which are noteworthy.
Some distinct features of the mosque are:

  • Square-shaped mosque with robust appearance.
  • Use of great rectangular pylons in the center of liwan, influence of circular tapering turrets of Tughlaqs resolved into rectangular shape.
  • Hindu influence is present in bracketed openings.
  • Huge arch springing between two pylons.
  • On the either side of Maqsura pylon are two identical mini – pylons and three separate gateways are also installed in northern, eastern and southern liwan.

Shahi qila Jaunpur

Shahi qila or Shahi fort or Karar Fort or Jaunpur fort is a 14th-century fort in Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh, India. Close to the bridge, on the banks of Gomti, is the fort, built in 1360 by Sultan Firoz Shah Tughlaq with materials brought in from the palace and temples of the Rathore kings of Kannauj. With the advent of Sharqis, the fortifications were further strengthened and numerous royal edifices added, but only to be reduced to rubble by the Lodis a century later. Mughal emperors Humayun and Akbar recreated the fort after extensive repairs. Much later it was acquired by the British and once again damaged during the first war of independence in 1857, and a few years later the English blew off its 40-pillared Chil Sitoon.

Shahi qila is one of the chief tourist attractions in Jaunpur. The mosque bears the evidences of the times in which it was built. The Atala Masjid is a useful specimen of mosques, not only in Uttar Pradesh but also in India.

Location of Shahi qila
2.2 km north-northeast of Jaunpur, 7.3 km northwest of Zafarabad, 16.8 km north-northeast of Mariahu, 26.3 km west-northwest of Kirākat.

Architecture of  Shahi qila
The fortification wall forms an irregular quadrangle with main gate towards east. Another exit in the shape of a sally port towards west is approached by a steep passage cut through the mound. The main gateway is about fourteen metres in height and some five metres in depth having usual chambers on either side. During the reign of Akbar, in order to provide extra security, Munim Khan added a courtyard in front of the eastern gateway with another eleven metres high entrance gate. The gates, walls and the bastions are veneered with ashlar stones on outer face.

One remarkable structure locally called Bhoolbhulaiya is a perfect model of Turkish bath or Hammam. This solid structure is partly underground having arrangements of inlet and outlet channels, hot and cold water and other toilet needs.

The mosque within the fort constructed in typical Bengal style is a narrow building about 39.40 x 6.65 metres having three low domes. A twelve metres high pillar bears a long Persian inscription recording the erection of mosque in 1376 by Ibrahim Naib Barbak. Another monolithic curious inscription placed in front of the outer gate, appealing all Hindu and Muslim Kotwalls of the fort to continue the allowances, possibly to the descendants of the Sharqis is quite interesting. It is dated to 1766 under the order of Saiyid Ali Munir Khan, the then governor of the fort on behalf of the Nawab Wazir of Oudh.

Vishnu Temple Gorakhpur

The Vishnu Temple is 3 Km. from Railway Station on Medical College Road.The Vishnu Temple has a full-size status of Lord Vishnu made of Kasauti (Black) stone. Vishnu Temple belongs to Pal dynasty of 12th Century A.D. This status was taken to Great Britain by the British rulers. But the Queen of Majhauli Raj fought a case in Privy Council of U.K. and regained the same. The traditional 'Ram Lila' is organised here every year on the occasion of 'Dusshera'.

Ramgarh Taal Gorakhpur

Ramgarh Taal is a natural lake. Ramgarh Taal lake is situated near Tara Mandal which is around 7 -8 km from the Railway station of Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh and covers an area of about 723 ha. The catchment area around the lake is approximately 1632 acres, out of which, 1235 acres land is under Gorakhpur Development authority (GDA). Fishes of different varieties live in this water body.  The former MP of the area, Mr. Virbahasur, in 1987 announced the Ramgarh Taal Tourist Complex scheme in 1987. From June 1987 to July 1988,  Gorakhpur Development authority  worked on this project. This was a 1200-acre project developed by the state government, to incorporate large number of activities, like water sports complex, buddha museum, planetarium, tourist bungalow and champa vihar park around the area. But in later years, the area began to lose its charm and condition of the lake deteriorated. The area of lake reduced from 723 ha to 669 ha in recent time. The depth of the lake has also reduced from 4.5 m in 1998 to 3.8 m in 2006.

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