Construction of the mausoleum of Quaid-i-Azam Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Karachi

The aim of the competition was to design the Mausoleum of Quaide Azam Mohammed Ali Jinnah on the site housing the existing sarcophagus. 

This competition was approved by the International Union of Architects (UIA). 


Construction lasted around ten years, from 1960 to 1970. The inauguration took place in June 1970.


Keywords : Heritage, Mosques, Spiritual places

Theme and objectives

The Mausoleum was intended to contain the remains of one of the men who founded the state of Pakistan and brought political freedom to the country, Muhammad Ali Jinnah. The aim of the organisers was to pay tribute to him by creating a building whose simplicity and uniqueness would express his solidity and dignity.

Muhammad Ali Jinnah was a Pakistani lawyer and politician, considered to be the founder of Pakistan. In 1940, he openly supported the idea that the Muslim people of India should have their own country. It was against this backdrop that the Muslim League voted for a separate nation with the Lahore Resolution. Pakistan was founded on 14 August 1947, following the partition of India.

The Mausoleum and the future mosque were not to be designed separately from each other but were to be homogeneous, taking into account the configuration of the aspect, orientation and levels of the site.

Jury Members

A total of 57 entries were received by the jury for this competition. The international jury was constituted by the following members: 

  • H. S. Suhrawardy, Prime Minister, PAKISTAN;
  • Eugène Beaudoin, Architect, FRANCE;
  • Robert H. Matthew, Architect, UNITED KINGDOM; 
  • Pier Luigi Nervi, Engineer, ITALY;
  • Gio Ponti, Architect, ITALY;
  • Georges Candilis, UIA representative, GREECE.


The competition was open to all architects, engineers and urban planners, whatever their nationality and/or place of residence.


Competition closed. Results were announced on 1957.