sarkhej-monuments

The well-known saint, Makhdum Shaikh Ahmed Khattu, a believer of Baba Ishq Maghribi of Khattu, established and died at Sarkhej, about 10 km south-west of Ahmedabad . Construction on a ‘dargah’ and mosque were begun in 1446, under Mohammad Shah II, and completed in the reign of Sultan Qutub-Ud-Din Ahmed Shah.

The ‘dargah’, the largest of its kind in Gujarat, has a plinth area of 31.70 m, and is roofed by a large dome. It also has surrounding rows of 13 pillars on each side. The walls are broken up into two storeys, and perforated stonework of great variety fills up the spaces above and below the dividing stones. The inner central square is partitioned by screen walls, perforated in steel and metal, with a door in similar workmanship.

A covered entrance leads from the ‘dargah’ into the mosque, which is to the west. The mosque has a roof of uniform height. Five big domes in a row, and 40 smaller ones, symmetrically disposed, correspond to the pillared squares within.

The roof is supported by 120 pillars of the same pattern. The mosque has an elegant simplicity; the columnar style adopted here appears to be on purpose, and compares favourably with the arched façade of other mosques in and around Ahmedabad . The ablution tank is situated in an enclosed alley, at half the height of the roof. Access to the roof is through a porch, in the thickness of the wall.

The tomb of Sultan Mohmud Begada is also part of the Sarkhej Complex. Stonework covers the pillars on three sides of the tomb, except for the east. A balcony window projects into the tank.

The tomb has a dome of 6.4 m diameter, carried on 12 inner pillars and containing tombs on raised platforms. This is successively surrounded by a second and third square of 20 and 28 pillars, respectively. The root has, besides the major dome, 16 outer, smaller domes.