“If this ancient mosque is renovated with its antiquities intact, it will find its place in our history”
An ancient mosque, believed to be at least a century old, has been discovered near Teknaf Marine Drive in Cox's Bazar.
Some young men made the discovery on Monday while clearing out a dense forest area in Mathabhanga under Baharchhara union of Teknaf upazila, reports Bangla Tribune.
Locals say elders used to relate stories of this ancient mosque. This mosque presumably dates back at least a hundred years. Muslim devotees were said to have offered prayers at the mosque till after the independence of Bangladesh.
As the area surrounding the archaeological site had become covered in dense vegetation, over time the mosque and its location became obscure to the people living in the vicinity.
The mosque, quite small in size, has an exterior area of 16ft x 12ft and an interior area of 7ft x 6ft. There is a large pulpit along one of the walls of this single-domed mosque. It also has an arch and a few small niches in the wall. The mosque is believed to have been built through using construction materials such as burnt bricks, sand, lime and surkhi.
Mohammad Ullah, a local resident, said, “According to our elders, this is a hundred-year-old mosque. Even after the independence of Bangladesh, people prayed here.
“If this ancient mosque is renovated with its antiquities intact, it will find its place in our history.”
Azim Ullah, an elder of the area, said: “The mosque is ancient. We have been hearing of this mosque since our childhood. Elders of our generation said that many years ago, foreign saints who used come to this country to preach Islam, used to stay there at night and worship. They probably built this mosque.”
Baharchhara Union Parishad Chairman Aziz Uddin said: “An ancient mosque had been found within the forest west of Marine Drive. There is no doubt that this is one of the smallest of ancient mosques. The matter of the discovery has been made known to the authorities concerned.
He said the new Deputy Commissioner of Cox's Bazar, Mamunur Rashid, had recently visited the archaeological site.