Hazrat Khwaja Baqi Billah Dargah

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Dargah Name: Hazrat Khwaja Baqi Billah Dargah
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Resting Place: Delhi
Gaddi Nashin: Pir Salamatullah

About Dargah: Khwaja Baqi Billah Dargah is a Sufi Shrine situated in Delhi’s Sadar Bazar area on Qutub Road, Singara Chowk, encompassing hundreds of tombs, a Madrassa and a Mosque.

The Dargah standing in honour of Hazrat Billah, who was the founder of the Naqshbandia Silsila in India, was born in 16th century at Kabul. After making holy tours in many places such as Samarkand, Lahore, Balkh and Multan, he came to Delhi to spread the Islamic mission. He died here and was buried making this place as a favorite place of worship for Delhi’s Muslims.

The ambience of the Dargah is so pleasing that when one enters, will have such a peace and tranquility, one would feel the blessings of Allah in abundance. The Dargah is unique with its richness in nature’s bounty deserving such a name and fame among Dargah’s of the country.

If you are not an I-love-solitude type, climb the stairs to the Madrassa. In its large hall, you might find almost a hundred children reciting the Quranic verses; each boy rocking to his own rhythm. Thanks to images beamed on BBC and CNN, a few of us unconsciously tag such sights with the would-be Talibani fighters of Afghanistan. That’s rubbish. Step inside; the children would smile.

Once back in the courtyard, try chatting with Mr Salamatullah. He can be identified with his long white beard, a frail physique and sunken cheeks. His children are all married, his wife dead and he himself lives alone in this dargah-mosque-graveyard complex. Known as Pir Sahib, he could be curt in the beginning. But if you continue to show unfailing courtesy, he would open up and tell you all that you need to know about Hazrat Billah.

Hazrat Billah lived in a mosque in Ferozeshah Kotla but he used to sweep in the kabristan behind (what is now) Maulana Azad Medical College. Hazrat Billah one day visited this graveyard and somehow got his clothes muddied here which prompted him to declare that this place would be his final destination.

According to a legend, Khwaja Billah had willed his funeral prayers to be led by a man who had never sinned, never missed a prayer and never skipped a night vigil. When he died at 40, a veiled person appeared from nowhere and declared that the Khwaja had asked him to lead the prayers. It was later discovered that the veiled person was the Khwaja himself.

Having always stressed on the concept of fanaah, the annihilation of the self, the Khwaja had wanted no dome to be built on his grave. So, in his Dargah, you sit under the open sky. They say that even if it is the sunniest day in peak summer, the barefooted pilgrims feel no heat.

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