Friday sermons delivered here are accessed on YouTube by people across the world. After it embraced the web 3.0 technology a year ago, the mosque’s popularity with youth and the English speaking Muslims has skyrocketed.

It is a different scene out here. The old, young and women come in droves, especially in Ramzan. In the last ten days it is packed to capacity as the devout go into a spiritual retreat (Itekaf).

That is Azizia Masjid at Mehdipatnam for you -- the only mosque in the city which has a presence on Facebook. To put it simply it is a local mosque with global connectivity. Friday sermons delivered here are accessed on YouTube by people across the world. After it embraced the web 3.0 technology a year ago, the mosque’s popularity with youth and the English speaking Muslims has skyrocketed. “Mashallah it was a great programme on Ramzan …,” says a Facebook post by Fayaz Zarar. Another user, Muneer Husain, regrets for “unfortunately missing it”.

Other activities

It is a mosque with a difference. It just doesn’t provide a place for worship, but also hosts numerous other activities. For instance you can get your BP and sugar levels checked freely after the ‘Fajar’ prayers everyday. There are also plans to set up a full-fledged diagnostic centre and arrange faculty to impart soft skills to youth.

The man behind these innovative ideas is Aijaz Mohiuddin Waseem, the Masjid president. Interestingly, he is himself a departure from the run of the mill ‘khateebs’ who are largely cut off from the mundane things. A postgraduate in chemistry, Mr. Waseem’s Friday sermons delivered on topics of current interest are eagerly looked forward to.

Big attraction

What is the big attraction at Azizia Masjid? The recitation of Imaduddin Mohsin, the Imam who leads the prayers. Having specialised in Quran recitation from Jamaitul Islamia, Madina Munawwara, his ‘lehan’ (accent) is close to Saud Al-Shuraim, one of the Imams of the grand mosque at Makkah. A large number Arabic knowing Somalis, Sudanese, Yemenis flock to the Masjid. Even NRIs based in Saudi Arabia come here whenever they are home. During Ramzan the mosque attracts worshippers for the ‘Taraveeh’ prayer and ‘Tahajjud’ namaz offered in the wee hours.