The city’s first all-women mosque will now be powered by solar energy to contribute towards improving Lucknow’s air quality. Ambar Mosque on PGI Road will operate on 100% clean andrenewable energy. “We have decided to install solar panels to power the mosque to reduce its dependence on electricity produced from highly polluting sources such as coal. The focus will be on clean sources such as solar energy,” said Shaista Ambar, founder president of All-India Muslim Women Personal Law Board. “In the last several years, Lucknow has been witnessing an increasingly degrading quality of air. Poor air quality is often caused by burning of coal, vehicular emissions, industrial activity and so on. While vehicular emission, industrial activities and crop burning are issues that need government intervention, reducing dependence on electricity is something that all of us can do something about,” she said.
Ambar established this mosque in February 1997 in defiance against the alleged patriarchy existing within the community. She also started an All-India Muslim Women’s Personal Law Board as a counter to the Muslim law board. The mosque helps women of the community to deal with things such as talaq, and helps educating the girl child, providing medicine and so on. Though it started as a women’s mosque, men are also allowed to offer prayers, she said. The foundation stone for Amber mosque was laid by famous Islamic scholar and prominent personality late Hazrat Ali Miyan Nadvi. “Husband-wife couples are counselled by experts when they approach us for help. Marriages of poor girls are solemnised here every year and the mosque is also treated as a celebration ground for Eid and national occasions like Independence Day and Republic Day,” said Amber.
A women’s wing is attached to the mosque premises and women are encouraged to come and pray. On certain occasions, they are also invited to hear special lectures of the Imam. She said it is a beautiful campus where people from all sects of Muslim come and pray together. People from other religions are also welcome to know about Islam and understand the true message of universal brotherhood, added Amber.