Jaipur stone artist Ajmal is giving finishing touches to BAPS Mandir

Story by  ATV | Posted by  Aasha Khosa | Date 16-02-2024
Mohammad Ajmal (Wearing identity card with red strap) with his team in front of the BAPS Mandir in Abu Dhabi
Mohammad Ajmal (Wearing identity card with red strap) with his team in front of the BAPS Mandir in Abu Dhabi


Farhan Israeli / Jaipur

Mohammad Ajmal of Jaipur is an artisan whose art is as much required for the holiest of the holy places OF Islam, Haram Sharif in Makkah as it is Abu Dhabi’s Swaminarayan temple (BAPS) which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently.

Ajmal had earlier carved Quranic messages on the black stone in the Masjid Haram Sharif of Makkah, Saudi Arabia.

He is now assigned the task of doing the floor of the Abu Dhabi temple. He has been working on the temple for four years.

Recently, Mohammad Ajmal also bagged the first prize for designing in the India Stone Mart-2024 held at Jaipur.

Ajmal is continuing his work on decorating the floor of this magnificent temple even though the major part of it will soon be opened to the public.

He is also credited with doing exquisite stonework at the Mansion of Global tycoon Lakshmi Niwas Mittal's house in London.

Ajmal said, “The Swami Narayan Temple of UAE being built by Bochasanwasi Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) will be a symbol of Indo-Arab culture. It has seven domes representing each of the UAE’s cities - Dhabi, Dubai, Ajman, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain.

The exquisite stone caring inside the Temple

“The carving done on the roof side of all these domes is being prepared in the trust's factory in Pindwara near Udaipur.

Ajmal and his team are giving finishing touches to the stone carving and the mandate to his team is that the floor of the temple should reflect these carvings and domes. The temple is an exquisite exposition of the Indian architecture. That means the temple will come before the world as a symbol of the Gulf country's culture and Indian culture and civilization.

Speaking of his work, Ajmal told Awaz-the Voice that he has done stonework in a five-story bungalow for a businessman from Nairobi in 2021.

This bungalow was built reflecting the elements of Indian architecture, stonework, and the variety of natural stones available in India. It took him 5 years to build this house.

Before awarding his work at the Abu Dhabi temple, some officials of the Swami Narayan Temple of UAE also went to see this house. It took him six months of communication and showing his work to get the contract for the BAPS Mandir.

 Ajmal and his team got the project for the work of this temple in the year 2021. They have to finalize all seven designs in a timeline of 42 months. This temple, spread over about 100 acres, not only has a place of worship for Hindus, but the complex which is coming up will also have a mosque for Muslims to pray, a church for Christians, a place of worship for Jews, the Pope, the Dalai Lama and heads of other major religions.

The BAPS temple is about 20 km from Abu Dhabi. A tent city is also being built here.

 Ajmal said, “After the completion of the work, they will get around Rs 90 lakh to Rs 1 crore for this work. It will take about 6 months to complete the work of one floor.” The stones used in this temple and the chemicals used to glue the stones for carving will last for the next 1000 years.