Archives

A regularly updated collection of historical records and  from the Africa Federation archives.

DOWN MEMORY LANE
 
AFRICA FEDERATION OFFICIALS VISIT TANGA – APRIL 1980
TANGA JAMAAT OFFICE ON STREET NO. 7, NGAMIANI



Above: On the left is Alhaj Abdulrasul Ahmed Lakha (Africa Federation Chairman), Mulla Asgharali M. M. Jaffer (not facing the camera). On the opposite; seated are from left Alhaj Anver Siwjee (Chairman Tanga Jamaat) Mohamed S.S. Alarakhia (Hon. Secretary - Tanga Jamaat) and Jaffer Dalal. On the right partly seen is Akber Mehta.


In the Above Picture Alhaj Raza Sachoo (Vice Chairman of Tanga Jamaat) can be seen seated on the right side of the table.

Photos Source: AFED Archives Section
 
SECRETARIAT
AFRICA FEDERATION ARCHIVES SECTION

ABDULHUSSEIN JUSAB SACHEDINA – “AZAD”
(1911-1957)

Abdulhussein Jusab Sachedina was born in 1911 at Mundra, Cutch in India and lived in Dar es Salaam and Lindi. He was the first secretary of Lindi Jamaat.
 
Being a writer he had taken the pen-name of 'Azad' and so although his name was Abdulhussein he was popularly known by his pen-name.  He was among the first persons who floated the idea for the creation of the Federation of all KSI Jamaats in Africa and so he is referred to as one of the "Pioneers" of Federation of Africa Jamaats.
 
In his book on Khoja History, Marhum Mulla Asgherali writes the following regarding Marhum Azad Sachedina:

Among the first thinkers who wrote about the need of a common platform was Marhum Abdulhussein Sachedina "AZAD", editor of the Gujarati monthly, "MUNADEE". "MUNADEE" means 'a herald'. In 1932, this reticent but profound thinker wrote an editorial in his monthly, appealing to leaders of major Jamaats to awaken and rise to the changing times. He can be safely called the first visionary who saw the ailing society, and suggested a remedy with clarity. His powerful pen heralded a new era.
 
Marhum Azad had a style which was quite appealing. With almost complete command over his subject, he wrote poetically, gracefully and with enviable coherence.
 
In this editorial which he penned in 1932, he says: "lthna-Asheri Society today is overwhelmed by layers of backwardness and retrogression. These layers have been building up for the last several years, and continue even today. The horizon is bleak and dark, and nowhere is a ray of light to be seen. The ship of our community is drifting aimlessly and helplessly in a vast ocean, and none can predict when it will perish against the rocks. This is not a figment of imagination by a poet, or empty, fictional verbiage by a writer. Those who care to spare a moment or two to make an appraisal will agree that our words portray an exact and accurate picture of the prevailing situation."

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DOWN THE MEMORY LANE
 
REPORT BY THE SHIA ITHNA-ASHERI MADRESSA STANMORE PRINCIPAL HAJI MUHAMMED NAZARALI

Alhamdulillah over 450 students are attending the Shia Ithna’asheri Madressah which caters for a wide range of subjects for boys and girls, also for special needs children. Similarly, there are integrated classes for the toddlers. The aim is to cement Islamic influence at a tender age. There are classes where the mature students are taught teaching methods, so that they may be groomed for the future generations. New classes are being introduced for the New Year, which will change the teaching approach to the elder students.

Not only has the Madressah flourished within its four walls, but more importantly, its teachings have brought about the awareness. Students are now asking what measures they can take to ensure that their hijab is maintained outside our own environment. The influence of the Madressah has stirred interest in the children to take part in all aspects of the mosque programs. To help volunteer, public speaking and to recite qasidas. The workshops organized by Madressah have helped instill better understanding in the youth, demonstrating how they can maintain and practice good behavior and Akhlaq.
 
It was the cooperation of the parents and teachers and their keenness to ensure that the children derive the most benefit from the few hours available, which has constantly improved.
 
With this spirited legacy, my only hope is that the cooperation and assistance shown in the past will continue so that the future will produce a generation ready and awaiting the call of the 12th Imam (A.T.F.S.)

REPORT BY THE PRINCIPAL - ISLAMIC MONTESSORI SCHOOL STANMORE
SAJIDA RASHID

The school was started in the outhouse in April 1986 as a Playgroup to care for the children between the ages of 3 to 5. 14 children enrolled by the end of the first year. Progress since then has been continuous, culmination in conversion from the play group to a fully-fledged Montessori School in January 1989.
 
The curriculum is based on Dr Maria Montessori Education theories which inter alia state that young children have an unborn will and desire to learn provided that they are given the right surrounding. The children are encouraged to explore the environment to develop self-discipline, orderliness, concentration, coordination and self-control.
 
A selection of specially designed Montessori apparatus assist in the basic learning process in History, geography, arithmetic, geometry, biology, reading and writing. In addition, Islamic education by way of recitation of the Holy Quran, Salaat, Ahadith of the Holy Prophet etc is included in the school curriculum.

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DOWN THE MEMORY LANE
 
MESSAGE FROM HAJI AHMED DUNGERSI - HON. SECRETARY - HUSAINI SHIA ISLAMIC CENTRE
 

I am grateful to Allah (S.W.T.) for granting me tawfik and good health which made it possible for me to serve this community for the past 6 years (1983 to 1989). This meagre contribution of mine is entirely for the pleasure of none but Allah (S.W.T)

When we embarked on the mammoth task of acquiring a property and building a multi- purpose centre many eyebrows were raised and in all honesty even our sanity was questioned. The whole project was treated as one big joke.

Today, Alhamdulillah our dream has come true. Husaini Shia Islamic Centre has come to being and is now used extensively for religious and social activities.

A project of such enormous magnitude would not have been achieved without the involvement, commitment and sacrifice of the members of the Community. I can only say (Ahsante sana) to all those who have sacrificed their time, expertise and wealth. Only Allah (S.W.T) can reward them here and in the hereafter. Ameen

A project of such enormous magnitude would not have been achieved without the involvement, commitment and sacrifice of the members of the Community. I can only say (Ahsante sana) to all those who have sacrificed their time, expertise and wealth. Only Allah (S.W.T) can reward them here and in the hereafter. Ameen

MESSAGE FROM HAJI HABIB JAFFERALI MULJI THE CHAIRMAN OF THE FEDERATION FOR KHOJA SHIA ITHNA- ASHERI JAMAATS OF AFRICA

 
I feel very much honored and delighted to have been asked to contribute a message for the Commemorative Souvenir marking of official opening of the Husaini Islamic Centre, Stanmore in U.K.

When reviewing the Stanmore Project, one is constrained to give due cognizance to its multi-dimensional function. This very fact speaks volumes for those who conceived the idea and prepared the groundwork.

On the one hand, the Husaini Islamic Centre is able to cater for the multifarious activities of the London Jamaat, which now has adequate facilities necessary for the provision of services related to its religious and social activities.

On the other hand, by housing the Secretariat of the World Federation of Khoja Shia Ithna- Asheri Muslim Communities, the complex becomes the headquarters of our Community Worldwide. The importance of the World Federation cannot be under-rated; Necessity of permanent and adequate facilities for a Secretariat can also therefore not be undermined. The Centre has succeeded in meeting important communal needs. The existence of the Madressa Syeed al-Khui in the complex is another important dimension of the project managed by the World Federation.

The Madressa will, Insha’allah, meet a religious obligation of immense proportions.

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FOND MEMORIES BY ALHAJ ANVER M RAJPAR
PRESIDENT, MEHFIL-E-MURTAZA



Though I now live in Karachi (Pakistan), my connection with the Khoja Shia Ithna Asheri community of London dates back from my student days in the 1950s.

In 1958, together with my other student friends, we decided to form an organization to attend to the needs of Khoja Shia Ithna Asheri of East African origin residing in London. A committee was formed to draft the constitution in which I took an active part. Within four months, a   constitution was produced and the East African Ithna Asheri students’ union came into existence. The members gave me an opportunity to serve the community electing me, as Secretary (1959-61) and then as president (1960-61). This body, however, was dissolved upon the formation of the Khoja Shia Ithna Asheri community of London.

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OPENING CEREMONY OF HUSAINI SHIA ISLAMIC CENTRE, STANMORE – U.K.
MESSAGE FROM ALHAJ MUSTAFA H. CHANDOO - THE FIRST PRESIDENT


 

All praise and thanks be to Allah (SWT) who made it possible for me to be in the team which started the Husaini Shia Islamic Centre popularly known as “The Stanmore Project”.

Alhamdulillah, this Centre which is now complete, is a milestone in the history of Khoja Shia Ithna Asheri Community of London. The foundation for the development of our community in London was laid in 1960s mainly by students from East Africa and it has been a privilege and honour to be associated with its development culminating - as far as I am concerned - to serve as its President from 1983 till to date.

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MARHUM POPAT BHAI RAWJI


Popat bhai Rawji arrived in Dar es Salaam in 1904 from India after a long sea voyage. He explained briefly on the development of our community in Dar es Salaam, as follows:
 
The two main people who contributed in the construction of Dar mosque were Sachoo Peera and Nasser Mawji. Nasser Virji had funds from the Hemani Trust which was used for construction of the Musafarkhana in 1913.
 
The opening of Dar mosque was done by Agha Kuchak Shah who arrived from Zanzibar with other dignitaries for the opening ceremony in 1942.
 
The old Imambara was constructed mainly by efforts of Versi Advani. From 1907 to 1918, children were taught Quran recitation by Musa Ali Hussein of Maswa.

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REVIVAL OF BAGAMOYO MAJLIS AND THE RENOVATION OF THE MOSQUE THE FIRST KHOJA SHIA ITHNA ASHERI MOSQUE IN MAINLAND OF TANGANYIKA IN 1889 (PRESENTLY TANZANIA)


In late 19th Century during German rule, Bagamoyo was the administrative and commercial capital of Tanganyika. There were about twenty two families of Khoja Shia Ithna Asheris and Khoja Shia Ismailis combined. In the year 1883, it was decided to build a mosque and Imambargha. Alhaj Saleh Jagsi, (the grandfather of Mohamedsaleh Gulamali Jagsi) and the Khoja Shia Ithna Asheris members of Bagamoyo Jamaat raised the funds from Zanzibar and Bagamoyo. Nasser Virjee & Company also contributed. With the supervision of Alhaj Saleh Jagsi the mosque and Imambargha construction was completed in the year 1889.

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MARHUM GULAMALI BHAI JIVAN PANJWANI
Sharing the Dar es Salaam experience of the early 1900’s

 Gulamali bhai Jivan Panjwani was born on 18th March 1882 in Hadiana, Gujarat, India. He arrived in Mombasa in 1902 after a sea journey from India. At Mombasa he stayed at the home of Walji Bhanji for 22 days. He then travelled by ship to Dar es Salaam. He has narrated the following details regarding Dar es Salaam.
 
The Jamaat of Dar es Salaam was small and the Imambara was made of corrugated iron sheets. It was German rule and the tiny town was surrounded by thick jungle all around. The wild animals would frequently enter and move around in town. One of the smooth roads in Dar es Salaam was called Ring Street but later on due to collection of water upto 4ft deep during rains, the area came to be known as Mchafukoge.

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REMEMBERING THE ELDERS OF OUR COMMUNITY AND THEIR SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTIONS



MARHUM GULAMHUSSEIN KALYAN OF LINDI

 Marhum Gulamhussein Kalyan was born in 1903 in Kutch Mundra. He learned Quran and Dinyat from Mulla Haji Mohammed Khaki in Kutch. Then he went to Bombay to study at Khanmohamed Habib School. He stayed at Sir Karim Ebrahim Baronet Orphanage. In 1922 he travelled to Zanzibar with Bande Khoryo and worked at Ladha Meghji. In 1924 he accompanied Marhum Rashid Versi to Lindi where he worked at Marhum Razahussein Pardhan business.
 
When he came to Lindi, Marhum Haji Hamzaali Noormohamed was the President of Lindi Jamaat and Abdulhussein Sachedina was the Hon. Secretary. The membership fee at that time was Sh. 1.00.

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THE ITHNA ASHERI UNION HUSAINI SHIA ISLAMIC CENTRE STANMORE-LONDON (REVISITED)

REPORT BY THE THEN CHAIRMAN ALHAJ KASSIM MANJI

This report was presented during opening ceremony of Husaini Shia Islamic Centre Stanmore London on Saturday 2nd December 1989 / 4th Jamadi ul Aakhar 1410 AH:

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