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Dargabari


Dargabari a complex of religious buildings, situated at village Sadipur (Nagar Sadipur) to the eastern side of Damdama, and to the adjacent north of Mograpara Bazar in Sonargoan. The complex comprises an extensive area consisting of an open courtyard, the khanka building, the tomb complex, a medieval mosque, nahbat-khana, a walled up graveyard, ruins of old buildings, and a big pond on the eastern extremity.

Nahbat-khana At the entrance of the compound there is a dilapidated structure known as the nahbat-khana (music room) which is said to have belonged to the Muslim governors, 'where musical instruments were sounded morning and evening to announce the travellers and fakirs that a place of shelter was at hand. It is a rectangular chamber measuring 4.6 ' 2.25 meter in the interior and is covered by a chauchala (four-roofed) vault. It is apparently a double-storied structure with a gateway on the ground floor and the provision for nahbat-khana on the upper floor. The very structure of the building leads some scholars to surmise that the nahbat-khana was originally a part of the gateway to a palace with music room on the upper chamber.

Tomb Complex A modern building on the northern side of Nahbat-khana houses the khanka. On the adjacent north of the khanka building there is a tomb complex wherein lies three tomb buildings. The mausoleum on the western extremity belongs to saiyid ibrahim danishmand, which is a dome-roofed building quadrangular in plan with hut type chauchala covering. The middle one belongs to Saiyid Arif-billah Muhammad Kamel (surnamed Shaykh Mahmud), son of Saiyid Ibrahim Danishmand, and the one on its eastern side contains the mortal remains of Saiyid Muhammad Yusuf and of his wife. These two mausoleums are elongated dome-roofed twin buildings, each surmounted by a pinnacle which are said to have originally been covered with or formed of gold. The tombs are rectangular in plan with plastered walls and hut-type chauchala covering. There are a few masonry graves in the open courtyard of the tomb complex, which mostly belong to the members of the family of Saiyid Danishmand.

Graveyard There is a walled-up graveyard on the northeast corner of the khanka premises wherein lies a row of five tombs on high masonry platform on the northern side. The tomb second from the east with red-marked top is reported to have belonged to Maulana sharfuddin abu tawwama. The other four tombs are traditionally said to contain the mortal remains of the royal persons like sultan and governors. On the southern side there are two tombs on a dilapidated platform which may have belonged to some fellow saints of Maulana Abu Tawwama.

Other structure On the northern side of the tomb complex stands the fath shah’s mosque (1484). A little further to the northwest are the ruins of the dwellings of the pirs. Two sets of buildings can still be seen there in ruins. One was a two-storied building with underground chilla-kotha (meditation room). The chilla-kotha is a rectangular one-storied structure consisting of three rooms. The other building shows one big hall with its wall preserving the net pattern design in plaster. This building was used as a madrasa. On the western side of these buildings, remains of construction can be seen at the ground level. The ruins of the tahwil or tahakhana (treasury) building in the compound, reported to have earlier been the langar-khana, does not exist now. At present modern houses fill the grounds to north of the mosque.

The present Dargabari had been the khanka of the sufi saints like Saiyid Ibrahim Danishmand, Saiyid Muhammad Kamel, and Saiyid Muhammad Yusuf. It appears to be the site of the khanka and madrasa of Maulana Sharfuddin Abu Tawwama, representing the seat of Islamic learning during the last quarter of the thirteenth century. The complex is being maintained by the descendants of Saiyid Ibrahim Danishmand. [Muazzam Hussain Khan]