Business Standard

PM Narendra Modi visits Egypt's historic 11th century Al-Hakim Mosque

The mosque's latest restoration was completed about three months ago

PM Modi, Al Hakim mosque

Photo: ANI Twitter

Press Trust of India Cairo
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday visited Egypt's historic 11th century Al-Hakim Mosque in Cairo, restored with the help of India's Dawoodi Bohra community.
On the second day of his state visit to Egypt, Modi visited the Fatimid era Shia mosque where he was received by the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities of Egypt, Dr Mostafa Waziri.

Modi was shown around the mosque by Shahzada Husain Burhanuddin, son of Sultan al-Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin.

The mosque's latest restoration was completed about three months ago. He appreciated the intricately carved inscriptions on the walls and doorways of the mosque which was built in 1012.

"Honoured to visit the historic Al-Hakim Mosque in Cairo. It's a profound testament to Egypt's rich heritage and culture," he tweeted in both Arabic and English.

Prime Minister Modi also met the leaders of the Bohra community, who are actively involved in the upkeep of this Fatimid era Shia mosque and highlighted the strong people-to-people ties between India and Egypt, the MEA said in a press release.

The mosque mainly performs Friday prayers and all five obligatory prayers.

"The Hon'ble Prime Minister of India @narendramodi today visited the historic Al-Hakim Masjid in Cairo, Egypt. Shahzada Husain Burhanuddin, son of Sultan al-Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, was present at the occasion to warmly receive the @PMOIndia," according to the official Twitter page of the global Dawoodi Bohra communities.

Over a thousand years old, al-Hakim is the fourth oldest mosque in Cairo and the second Fatimid mosque to be built in the city. The mosque covers an area of 13,560 square metres, with the iconic central courtyard occupying 5,000 square metres.

The Bohra community, which is settled in India, originated from the Fatimids. They renovated the mosque from 1970 onwards and have been maintaining it since then, India's Ambassador to Egypt Ajit Gupte earlier said.

"The Prime Minister has a very close attachment to the Bohra community who have also been in Gujarat for many years and it will be an occasion for him to again visit a very important religious site for the Bohra community," Gupte added.

The historic Mosque has been named after Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah, the 16th Fatimid caliph and is an important religious and cultural site for the Dawoodi Bohra community.

The Dawoodi Bohra Muslims are a sect of followers of Islam who adhere to the Fatimi Ismaili Tayyibi school of thought. They are known to have originated from Egypt and later shifted to Yemen, before establishing a presence in India in the 11th century.

Prime Minister Modi has a long-standing and warm relationship with the Dawoodi Bohras even before he became Prime Minister. 

Don't miss the most important news and views of the day. Get them on our Telegram channel

First Published: Jun 25 2023 | 5:00 PM IST

Explore News