Thursday, 27 September 2018

The historical venerated tombs of Mohammed Ghaus and Tansen, Gwalior

Tomb of Mohammed Ghaus, Gwalior. shunya.net/
Tomb of Mohammed Ghaus, Gwalior. shunya.net/
The city of Gwalior and the surroundings have many tourist attractions invariably related to Hindu architecture and Hindu culture. The tombs of Mohd. Ghaus and Tansen memorial located in Hazira Chowk are quite interesting. 

Tombs of Mohammed Ghaus & Tansen  located at a distance of roughly two kilometres from the city  of Gwalior are  16th century structures. They  house the mortal remains of   Ghaus Mohammed who was once a well-known prince-turned-Sufi saint and the other one is that of Tansen, a great Hindustani Musician.  This mausoleum being a big tourist destination, is a good example of Mogul architecture  and both  Muslims and Hindus visit this place in large number.  No doubt, these beautiful Islamic buildings bring out the talents of artisans of the  past era. They are in a quiet and serene environment and have fine interior and intricately carved jalli work-lattice windows.  
Tomb of Mohammed Ghaus, Gwalior. shunya.net/
The Mausoleum with tombs came up during the reign of Mogul ruler Akbar. Ghaus Mohammed was an Afghan Prince who later became  a Sufi saint and  was leading a self-counted life.  The legend has it that Mohammad Ghaus was of great help to  Babur when he conquered the fort of Gwalior in 1526 CE. Babur was the one who laid the foundation for the  Mogul dynasty in India and their reign continued for  several generations. The Sufi saint occupies a unique place in the history of India and had a great influence on the Mogul rulers as well on a large section of people. As a result of his influence, most of the Mogul rulers respected the sentiments of Hindu  and ran the kingdom with Justice and fairness. Hence their regime lasted for a longtime. The glory of Mogul dynasty had begun  to decline  when treacherous Aurangzeb  seized the Mogul throne with force.  Mogul  emperors like Babur and Humayun had their spiritual moorings under the shadows of Ghaus Mohammed. 

Lattice window, Mohd. Ghaus Tomb, Gwalior. alamy.com
The structure, a good example of Mogul style, has hexagonal pillars fixed at each of its four corners. The building, square in plan is topped by a square dome decorated with blue ceramic tiles.The hexagonal domed kiosks at its corners together with sloping eaves that project from exterior enhance the beauty of this mausoleum. . The tomb walls feature intricate carvings and latticework.
The tomb of Tansen, Gwalior. shunya.net
Tomb of Mohammed Ghaus, Gwalior. shunya.net/
Close to this tomb is the Memorial of Tansen who was a well-known  musician and one among the nine jewels of Akbar's court. He is among the most influential personalities in North Indian tradition of Hindustani classical music.The classical Hindustani music concert will not be a thrilling one if it does not include the fine compositions of  Tansen.  He is well  remembered for his epic Dhrupad compositions, creating several soul-stirring new ragas, as well as for writing two classic books on music Sri Ganesh Stotra and Sangita Sara.  Buried near to his  respectful guru, his tomb is a beautiful structure and lots of Hindus and Muslims visit this site. 
The tomb of Tansen, Gwalior. shunya.net
Typical of Mogul  architectural style that includes nice  gardens, around the mausoleum, this memorial, often referred to as the Tomb of Tansen is believed to be a part of the living cultural heritage of Gwalior.  An interesting aspect of this great heritage site is  every year in November / December, a national level annual Tansen Music Festival is held at the place to honor this great musician. Interesting performances by reputed Hindustani classical Musicians from different parts of India are held here  in a serene and venerated  atmosphere. A great tribute to the Hindustani musician of the past Mogul era. Photo credit: http://www.shunya.net/Pictures/NorthIndia/Gwalior/Gwaliorhtml.