The Mauritius Jummah mosque is actually the Mosquee Des Arabes, whose extension begun in 1878. The plan was to make a bigger structure able to accommodate the Muslim congregation. The workers with skills in plastering and moulding were needed and as they couldn’t be found locally, they were brought from countries like India. These workers slept and eaten inside the outer court’s pillared arches. It took 20 years for the Mauritius Jummah mosque to be finished, with delays caused by the workers’ diseases or by the materials’ shortage.
The project ended in 1895 and was supervised by Al-Hajj Jackaria Jan Mahomed, an important member of Mauritius Muslim community. The Mauritius Jummah mosque is a piece of architecture work, with white minarets, trimmed arches and bulging domes. The workers proved dexterity and skill that blended the old structure with the modern one. It has imposing columns and massive arches, the Munhal and the Moorish lines are blended in harmonious way. The tranquillity and the solemnity of the interior are in contrast with the outside surroundings that are boisterous. There is an open court with a Badamia Tree in the middle, a tree that is older than the mosque.
The mosque’s designers had the great idea of incorporating the tree in the building’s structure. The tree has a specific charm and offers worshippers a cool and peace place. Staying under this tree in a clear night, you can see all the stars and you can feel like going to the Oriental land. The expenses were so big that Muslims couldn’t raise the whole amount of money and the merchants ones started to charge every grain bag with 2% over the price of the market to raise the money.
This extra cost-church rate- was paid by everybody for the good cause and the thousands rupees were donated every year to the Mauritius Jummah mosque’s president to pay the works. The Mauritius Jummah mosque has prayer hall that has a vaulted hall similar to the one of Mosquee-des- Arabes. The glass chandeliers hanging from towering domes have been providing lighting for more than 50 years.
The wonderful chandeliers can be admired in the prayer hall reminding of the old days, their light giving a special air to the mosque’s decor that today has beautiful fluorescent tubes. The Mauritius Jummah mosque’s prayer hall is special because has an interior comprising a soft mix of Indian and Arabic motifs. This mosque is a magnificent monument inspiring the religious and dedication fervour of the builders, designers and founders.
Its stature has became huge over the time and it has a special place in so many Muslims’ hearts that come to the sanctuary daily to worship their God-Allah for meditation and to seek for comfort and inner peace. The Mauritius Jummah mosque is the island’s grand mosque holding an important place in the Muslims’ cultural and religious life. So, if you visit Mauritius don’t hesitate to visit this place also.