Bibi-ka-Maqbara

The Bibi Ka Maqbara (English:”Tomb of the Lady”) is a maqbara located in Aurangabad, Maharashtra, India. It was built by Azam Shah,son of Aurangzeb, in 1678 in memory of his mother, Dilras Banu Begum (posthumously known as Rabia-ud-Daurani). It bears a striking resemblance to the famous Taj Mahal,the mausoleum of his grandmother, Mumtaz Mahal. Aurangzeb was not very interested in architecture, though he had built the small, but elegant, Pearl Mosque at Delhi. The Bibi Ka Maqbara was the largest structure that he had to his credit.

The comparison to the Taj Mahal has often obscured its very own considerable charm. Due to the strong resemblance, it is also called the Dakkhani Taj (Taj of the Deccan). The Bibi Ka Maqbara is the principal monument of Aurangabad and its historic city. An inscription found on the main entrance door mentions that this mausoleum was designed and erected by Ata-ullah, an architect and Hanspat Rai, an engineer respectively. Ata-ullah was the son of Ustad Ahmad Lahauri, the principal designer of the Taj Mahal.

Entry to the mausoleum is through a main entrance gate on its south, which has foliage designs on brass plate on wood covering from the exterior. After passing through the entrance a small tank is provided and a low profile screen wall leads to the main structure. The screened pathway has a series of fountains at its centre.

The structure is in the form of a hexagon, its angles ornamented with minarets.Bibi-ka-maqbara was built in 1660 by prince Azam Shah in the memory of his mother, Dilras Banu Begam. In 1720, Nizam-ul-Mulk Asif Jah, a distinguished General of Aurangzeb with the intention of founding his own dynasty in the Deccan, arrived at Aurangabad and made it his capital. He paid a visit to Delhi in 1723, but returned in 1724. Nizam Ali Khan Asaf Jah II transferred his capital from Aurangabad to Hyderabad in 1763.