Locals blamed the lack of any renovation initiative from authorities concerned as the reason why the historical mosque was falling apart.
Constructed under the patronage of zamindar Syed Khan Panni in 1608, the Atia Mosque was built in the architectural style of the Sultani and Mughal eras featuring intricate terracotta designs on its wall.
In recognition of the mosque’s significance as part our heritage, it was featured on the Tk10 currency that was introduced in 1996.
Visiting the mosque recently, the Dhaka Tribune found that the structure’s walls had developed cracks and the terracotta designs on the dome and the walls were falling apart.
Md Rafiqul Islam, the muezzin of the mosque, told the Dhaka Tribune that the plaster on the walls had become damp, while heavy rainfall resulted in water leaking through the roof.
Syed Monirul Haque, a local who had been appointed by the Archaeology Department as the site director, claimed that the boundary walls were being damaged as trees and bamboo plants outside the area were growing into the walls.
Md Shahin Mia, a local, claimed that the mosque had only a nominal amount of repairing done in 2000. He added that the authorities concerned ignored a previous renovation request from the mosque committee five years ago, saying that the mosque was behind on their priority list.
Asked whether any recent initiative has been made to repair the mosque, Tangail Deputy Commissioner Md Mahbub Hossain said: “The Department of Archaeology has been contacted for renovating the mosque as soon as possible.”
Shubho and Sharif, SSC candidates living near the mosque, claimed that both local and international tourists frequently visited the famous Atia Mosque.
Blaming the authorities for their negligence in preserving the aesthetic beauty of the mosque, they demanded that the Atia Mosque again be featured on the Tk10 note or on a currency with a higher denomination.
Clothes trader Shafiqur Rahman, who travelled from Tangail’s Korotia along with his wife and niece to see the mosque, said: “I am very disappointed after seeing the sorry state of the mosque.”
Shafiqur’s nience Samanta Islam, who is a college student, also pointed out that tourists there should be welcomed by signboards in both Bangla and English describing the history and significance of Atia Mosque.