A watermill known as a Panchakki. This monument, located in Aurangabad, Maharashtra, demonstrates the scientific thought process in medieval Indian architecture. It was designed to generate energy through water brought down from a mountain spring. Attached to the dargah of the Sufi saint Baba Shah Musafir, the building is situated in a garden near Mahmud Darwaz and contains a mosque, madrasa, kacheri, minister’s house, inn and houses for zananas.
Most of the buildings in the dargah complex (including the Panchakki) were built around 1695 by Turktaz Khan, a noble in Nizam-ul-Mulk Asaf Jah’s staff. The rectangular reservoir and fountain in front of the mosque were added 20 years later. By Jamil Baig Khan. Dating back to the 17th century, this ingenious watermill was designed to use the energy generated by water flowing from a nearby spring to turn the large grinding stones of a flour mill. Shah Mosafar died in 1110 Hijri. This water mill was used for grinding grain for pilgrims and disciples of saints as well as for garrison troops.
Today we may be living in a world where science and technology have reached great milestones. However, looking at the Panchakki from Aurangabad, we cannot deny the fact that medieval India was also up-to-date with its own science and technology.
Also known as ‘water mill’; The origin of the name is related to the mill that used to grind grain for pilgrims for darshan, Panchakki was built to meet the energy requirement by bringing down the water from the nearby mountain spring. An underground tap supplies the mill with uninterrupted water, which then descends from a great height to a tank below and generates the power required to run the mill.
Around the mill, you find Baba Shah Musafir Dargah, a vast garden and many other monuments. It also offers a stunning view of the Kham River and the monument to Baba Shah Musafir and some of his disciples’ tombs. One of the scientific wonders of old, this is truly a must-see place to visit in Aurangabad!
- Place: Panchakki, Near Government Medical College (Ghati), Aurangabad Pincode * 431001 , Government Medical College, PES Engineering College
- Time : 7 AM to 9 PM
- Entrance Fee: Indian Tourist : Rs.5 / Foreign tourists : Rs.100