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Istaravshan (Tajik: Истаравшан; Persian: استروشن‎) is a city in Sughd Province in Tajikistan. Located in the northern foothills of the Turkistan mountain range, 78 kilometers southwest of Khujand, Before 2000, it was known as Ура́-Тюбе (Ura-Tyube) in Russian, Ӯротеппа (Ūroteppa) in Tajik and O‘ratepa in Uzbek. In 2000, the Tajik authorities decided to rename the name of the city from O‘ratepa into Istaravshan, the process called as forced "Tajikization" or "Persification" by many.

Such monuments of antiquity as Istaravshan deserve special attention, such as the Kakh-Kakh fortress, childukhtaronon, the Kok-Gumbaz madrassah, the Bobotago mausoleum, the Khudoir Balami mausoleum, the mausoleum and mosque of Hazrat Shokh, the Sari Maeor Ensemble, other Chor-Ghaz.
Kok-Gumbaz Madrasah. Istaravshan, TajikistanMedres Kok-Gumbaz (16th century). If you look at the city from above, you can see that the blue dome of the Kok-Gumbaz mosque-madrassah hovering above it. It is located in the western part of the city and is named after the blue tiled dome (Kok-Gumbaz in Russian means “Blue Dome”). This 16th-century building was built on the initiative of Abdulatif Sultan, the son of the famous astronomer and philosopher Ulugbek, the grandson of Amir Timur.
The popular legend about the construction of Kok-Gumbaz says that Abdulatif, having quarreled with his father, left his parents' house and got a job with an old dekhkanin to dig a ditch to irrigate a piece of his land. For this work he should have received 100 tenge. The father found out about this and took the peasant’s honestly earned money from the peasant, added his own to them and built madrassas with these funds. Even after three centuries, at the end of the 19th century, students studied at the madrasah.
The main building of Kok-Gumbaz is built of square bricks. The main large square hall is expanded by four deep niches on the sides. A niche with a mihrab is decorated with rich sculpting. The walls here are exquisitely painted. The entrance portal and the dome are faced with majolica, in the manner of inlay.
Mausoleum of Hazrat Shokh (18th century). Absolutely every resident of Istaravshan knows who is buried in the Khazrati Shokh mausoleum - this sacred place is the grave of St. Khazrati Shokh - the brother of Kusam ibn Abbas, the cousin of the prophet Muhammad buried in the 11th century in the Samarkand ensemble Shahi Zind. This is the oral tradition of these places. The mausoleum itself, which is one of the most ancient sights of Tajikistan, is included in the historical and architectural complex “Hazrat Shokh”, located in the old part of Istaravshan. The complex consists of three cult buildings: the Hazrati Shokh Mausoleum, the Khudoyor Valami Mausoleum and the Hazrati Shokh Mosque (also known as Namazgokh) dating from the 19th century. All three buildings are located in a semicircle. Each of them was erected at different times and has its own history of creation and purpose. In the past, the complex also included the city cemetery and madrasah.
Today, the Khazrati Shokh mausoleum is a modest two-domed brick structure with a tomb (gurkhan) and a chapel (ziyorathon), repeatedly restored. In front of the mausoleum there is a spring, the water of which is considered sacred and healing. According to legend, the spring was formed after caliph Ali lowered his staff into the high mountain lake Oykul. A staff surfaced at the feet of Khazratishokh buried in Ura-Tyube. At this place a spring arose. It is from this spring, according to scientists, that the history of the mausoleum began. Near the spring, as the personification of the source of life among Muslims, a burial of a revered religious figure appeared. Later, a mausoleum was built over his grave.
The complex dates back to the 18th century, although historically arose much earlier - in 10-11 centuries.

Distinguished members of Majlisi Milli and delegates of Majlisi Namoyandagon! Dear compatriots! Despite the unprecedented complexity of the modern world, as well as climate change and its negative impacts – such as droughts and water scarcity that have been occurring in the region in recent years—Tajikistan had another successful year in 2023, due to the hard work of the country’s proud people. There have been achieved a significant progress in every aspect of society’s life and the country’s GDP increased by 8.3 percent compare to the previous year and has reached over 130 billion somoni. In addition to providing 102,5% of the country’s income for the budget, the state and government have taken concrete steps to meet their social duties and resolve problems associated ....>>>


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