Located on the Sabarmati River, Ahmadabad was founded in 1411/814 AH by the Muslim Sultan Ahmad Shah, the ruler of Gujarat. Newly proclaimed, the ruler felt vulnerable in the capital of Anahilvada-Patan, and moved his court to Ashaval, a Hindu settlement that supported him, and which he renamed Ahmadabad, after himself.
The new capital of Gujarat developed rapidly with the palace as the nucleus, encircled by a commercial districts. The Bhadra Fort represents the footprint of the original city. The nobility settled outside the city limit, forming their individual settlements. These settlements, known as puras, were named after their respective founders with the suffix of 'ganj' attached, like Nurganj or Muradganj.
Ahmadabad became a part of the Mughal Empire in 1572/980 AH under Emperor Akbar. In 1817/1232 AH, the British took over and the East India Company made it the military and administrative center of Gujarat. No longer the capital of Gujarat in post-Independence India, Ahmadabad is still a principal city with a thriving cotton industry earning it the title of 'Textile City'. Architecturally, the city boasts some of the most interesting examples of fifteenth century Gujarati style. The Jami Masjid and the Mausoleum of Ahmad Shah are an adaptation of indigenous Hindu and Jain architecture; the Siddi Saiyad's Mosque is famous for its exquisite yellow stone latticework, the Rani Sipri's mosque is an elegant dedication to Sultan Mahmud Begara's Hindu wife.
Modern Ahmadabad is spreading west of the Sabarmati River. This portion of the city plays host to the work of two famous architects, Le Corbusier and Louis Kahn. Sanskar Kendra, Mill Owners' Association building and the private residences of Sarabhai and Shodhan were designed by Le Corbusier, while the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) by Louis Kahn is one of the top college for business studies.
Davies, Philip. The Penguin Guide to the Monuments of India - Volume 2: Islamic, Rajput, European. London: The Penguin Group, 1989.
R.N. Mehta and Rasesh Jamindar. "Urban Context." In Ahmadabad, edited by George Michell and Snehal Shah, 1. Bombay: Marg Publications, 1998.
DK Eyewitness Travel Guides: India London: Dorling Kindersley Limited, 2002.
The Mosque of Baba Lu'lu'i, or Baba Muhammad Ja'far, is located along the east bank of the Sabarmati River in the neighborhood of Behrampur, about a mile and a half south of the old walled city of Ahmedabad. It is dated to the last quarter of the sixteenth/tenth century AH or thereabouts based on its style, which resembles that of the Hasan Muhammad Chishti Mosque, constructed in 1565.
The mosque is a rectangular building, open on the east side and closed on the three other sides. The east side is completely open, with ten pillars supporting nine arches of varying lengths (the central arch being the widest). Flanking this arcade are two massive buttresses that rise to the height of the roof and are ornately carved with bands of vegetal motifs.
The interior of the mosque is a large trabeated (pillared) prayer hall. A central dome carried on twelve pillars rises over a large octagonal bay in line with the central archway on the east facade, and the central mihrab on the qibla wall. This central dome is raised above the height of the roof. One aisle separates the central domed bay from the eastern arcade and the qibla wall. On either side of the domed bay are three aisles formed by two rows of pillars and a third row of engaged pillars on the side walls. These pillars dividing these aisles line up with those of the archways on the eastern facade. Three smaller domes cover the bays of the central aisle of these three side aisles on either side. The qibla wall has three mihrabs: one at the end of the central aisle and one at the end of each of the domed side aisles.
Burgess, James. The Muhammadan Architecture of Ahmadabad. Part II, 45-47. Archaeological Survey of Western India, Vol. 8. London: W. Griggs and Sons, 1905.