The World Federation 6th Executive Council Meeting for the term 2011-2014 – Mumbai, India
Superbly organized by the Mumbai Jamaat, the 6th EXCO meeting was held at Hotel Sahara Star near Santacruz in Mumbai on Saturday, 4th January, 2014, it was a well attended meeting. Councillors, invitees and members from various Jamaats and Institutions of our community travelled from far and from other towns of India to attend the meeting. It was a good opportunity also to meet with the Office Bearers and Councillors of the World Federation, Regional Federations of Africa, Europe, North America, Pakistan and from other regions of India. The meeting was held at a state of the art conference room at Hotel Sahara Star that provided a serene atmosphere throughout the entire session which continued up to late at night on Saturday.
A meeting of the WF and AFED office bearers was held earlier on Friday, 3rd January, 2014 at the same venue covering several subjects, and review of progress on the following:-
- Secular and Religious Education assistance and support for students from the Jamaats under AFED.
- Higher Education Loan and Scholarships/Loan Repayments challenges.
- Housing needs and developments in Jamaats under AFED.
- Economic Empowerment Assistance and Small Scale Businesses Schemes.
- Welfare Relief Needs and the new reporting requirements.
- Leadership Development (Capacity Building) Joint Programs for Africa.
- The current challenges facing our community globally, looking for a common approach to these emerging challenges and concerns.
A plan of action was agreed upon also, a discussion on the proposal brought up by the WF Secretariat for a Regional Summit involving the Regional Federations to deliberate on core issues and prepare common strategies and policies, with a work plan for deliberations in the WF Conference in May 2014 in Dar es Salaam.
“Well-Come” dinner organized in the upper hall of the KSI Jamaat Imambargha complex and hosted by Mumbai Jamaat preceded the WF EXCO Meeting. The Chairman of the Africa Federation, Alhaj Anwarali Dharamsi spoke briefly, he called for greater cooperation amongst the Regional Federations and thanked Mumbai Jamaat for the warm hospitality and wonderful services extended by the Organizing Committee from the time the AFED delegation arrived in Mumbai. The AFED Vice Chairman, Alhaj Shabir Najafi spoke about the present business and investment opportunities in some part of Africa. Several other dignitaries also spoke at this function. Br. Ali Akbar Shroff, the Honorary Secretary of Mumbai Jamaat gave brief introduction of the speakers, followed by a short history of Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheris by Br. Salim Rajabali Dawoodani.
The 6th EXCO Meeting of the WF was attended by Councillors from the Africa Federation, led by the AFED Chairman, Anwarali Dharamsi accompanied by Navazaly Molou (Vice Chairman of AFED and Chairman of Conseil Regional of Madagascar), Aunali Khalfan (Hon. Secretary of AFED), Mohamed Hemani (Hon. Treasurer of AFED), Kumail Manji (Hon. Asst. Secretary of AFED). Shabir Najafi (Vice Chairman of AFED) who attended in his capacity of elected WF Councillor. Seyed Hassan Naqvi (Chairman, WF Electoral Commission) who is also Africa Federation Tabligh Board (AFTAB) Chairman attended the meeting. Also present at the meeting were invitees from Africa, Amir Merali (Nominated Councillor of the Africa Federation from Mombasa), Fazel Kassam (Member of Dsm Jamaat). The full report of the EXCO meeting is available from the WF Secretariat.
On Sunday, 5th January 2014, the first ever Education Excellence Conference was organized by the World Federation in Mumbai under the auspices of Zainabiya Child Sponsorship Scheme (ZCSS), it was attended by Councillors, Educationists, Education Institutions, Agencies and Invitees. The Opening Address was delivered by Br. Masum Somji, the Assistant Secretary General of ZCSS. The Guest Speaker at the Conference was Professor Amir Ullah Khan, Senior Policy Advisor to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Br. Shabbar Dhalla, the WF Executive Councillor chaired the full day session.
On the same day in the evening, Mumbai Jamaat and JIBA International organized Networking Session and Dinner at Mumbai Jamaat Imambargha complex; it was attended by about 250 people, including the WF Councillors, Visitors and Mumbai Jamaat members. Short speeches were delivered by Ali Akbar Shroff, Shabbar Dhalla, Dr. Akber Mohamedali, Mustafa Dhanji and Anver Rajpar.
Part of the mission to India was to visit other Jamaats. On 9th January 2014, the AFED Chairman accompanied by the Hon. Treasurer, Mohamed Hemani, Hon. Secretary, Aunali Khalfan and AFTAB Chairman, Seyed Hassan Naqvi paid an official visit to Madras Medical Mission (MMM) and Institute of Cardio-Vascular Diseases in Chennai, they met with the officials and two senior doctors of the Institute, and also visited a patient from Mwanza Jamaat who was at the time admitted for treatment at MMM. It is one of the renowned Medical Mission and Cardio-Vascular Institute in India which has been working closely with the Central Health Board (CHB) of Africa Federation for almost 20 years, most of the heart patients and recently kidney diseases patients are being referred to MMM with some encouraging results, and at reasonable cost.
On Saturday, 11th January 2014, the AFED delegation visited Bhavnagar Jamaat; the WF President, Dr. Asgarali Moledina flew from Mumbai to Bhavnagar while the AFED delegation accompanied by Alhaj Gulam Virjee of Dubai and the President of Ahmedabad Sarkhej Jamaat, Alhaj Nasir Dosani travelled by road from Ahmedabad to Bhavnagar.
The Bhavnagar Jamaat President, Alhaj Ramzan Asaria hosted the delegation at his residence. A meeting was held there and various pertinent subjects concerning the developments of microfinance, education, and regional cooperation were discussed. A visit was also made to the Jamaat office and to the construction site of the redevelopment of the Mosque in Bhavnagar.
In December 2010 with the support of NASIMCO and the World Federation, jointly with Bhavnagar Jamaat initiated the Mustafa Welfare Society in Bhavnagar with an initial capital of Rs. 4.06M. The Bhavnagar Jamaat contributed (2.6M) and NASIMCO (1.46M). The Jamaat then launched Microfinance Loan Scheme for small businessmen in our community who needed a capital support to carry out businesses that exist with a reasonable return and a turn-over within short periods. The Scheme has so far been successful, some recipients shared their experiences with the visitors, they spoke highly of the Scheme, but also requested for bigger amounts of loan and more time to repay.
Currently, the first time applicants are given loan for 3 months and thereafter 6 months upon a record of prompt repayments. The delegation were impressed with the success stories, however they requested that regular reports and data collection should be submitted to the WF Secretariat so that more funds can be made available in the future. Some of the recipients stated that their lives have changed for better since the Scheme was introduced by the Jamaat, they can do much more with the financial support.
The President of Bhavnagar Jamaat, Alhaj Ramzan Asaria thanked the WF President for the support and requested him to pursue with NASIMCO on the balance of the funds.
Hon. Secretary of AFED, Alhaj Aunali Khalfan stressed the importance of disseminating information and success stories with other regions, he urged the youths to support and work hand-in-glove with the Jamaat to develop good system of reporting on this and other schemes and opening newer avenues for themselves and members of the Bhavnagar Jamaat. He said the scope is vast, we need to work harder and in cooperation with each other, he offered to assist whenever called upon by the Jamaat.
The AFED delegation also visited Ahmedabad; they were received by the Sarkhej Jamaat President, Alhaj Nassir Dosani and his Committee Members. Dr. Asgarali Moledina, Alhaj Gulam Virjee and Sarkhej Jamaat Managing Committee Members and AFED delegation visited the site of the intended Housing Project for the community members; the plan is also to provide a Musafirkhana on the ground floor. The plot is centrally located and close to our Sarkhej Mosque.
After Maghribayn prayers and majlis at the Mosque on Sunday, 12th January, the AFED Chairman addressed members of the community; he outlined briefly the various activities of the Africa Federation and thanked the Jamaat for their support and cooperation to our patients who are referred by the Central Health Board (CHB) of AFED for medical treatment in Ahmedabad.
AFED delegation met with the family of late Chottu Bhai Dosani at his home to pay their respects, Chottu Bhai passed away last year in Ahmedabad after a short illness; Chottu Bhai was a good supporter of AFED, he was helpful to our patients who went there for medical treatment.
We take this opportunity to thank the Mumbai Jamaat and their Organizing Committee, the Bhavnagar Jamaat and their Committee Members, the Ahmedabad Sarkhej Jamaat and their Committee Members and all volunteers for the cooperation, logistics assistance and for the warm reception and hospitality extended to the AFED delegation throughout the visit in India. We pray to Allah (SWT) by His infinite mercy and grace to bestow good health, success and happiness to one and all members of our community throughout the world, and to continue making strides in building a stronger and united community to be proud of.