In photos: “Life of Jehangir” – Ismaili missionary, teacher and writer who rendered long and dedicated services to the Jamat and the Imam-of-the-Time

“My many classmates and I from the class of ’67, Dar es Salaam, will always hold such fond memories of both Mr. and Mrs. Merchant in our hearts. We say goodbye to Mr. Merchant with heavy hearts, feeling a deep sense of loss of a wise and kind elder, while we feel so grateful and privileged to have been his young charges. Rest in peace, dear teacher and friend; you will be remembered lovingly by so many.” — Naseem E.J.

001The Life of Jehangir Normanna poster

By ABDULMALIK MERCHANT
Editor/Publisher Simergphotos, Simerg and Barakah .Com

Alwaez Jehangir Merchant, loving husband of Alwaeza Maleksultan, dear father of Alnoor, Fahar and Abdulmalik, and a cherished and proud ‘dada’ (grandfather) of Naim and Nurin died on May 27, 2018 at the age of 89. To remember him, his family prepared a special poster under the title “The Life of Jehangir”.

The poster intrigued friends and visitors who came to visit Alwaez and Alwaeza. Maleksultan, with her photographic memory, provided rich accounts about their lives together, and especially the services they had rendered together to Jamats around the world.

Alwaez and Alwaeza were life-long partners for 66 years, and served Ismaili institutions side by side in both honorary and professional capacities from 1954 onwards. However, Alwaeza had long before started giving sermons in Jamatkhanas in Mumbai and Bandra from a very young age, when she was still in her early teen years.

This post expands on the pictures displayed in the poster, and includes a few of the hundreds of photos of family members and friends that Alwaez and Alwaeza preserved in their family albums.  Many who are in the pictures may be viewing their own photos for the first time; this is not surprising because we often find our pictures that we never knew existed when we visit our friends and see their albums. We are also pleased to include historical photos of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s visits to Africa and the U.K.

The entire family of late Alwaez Jehangir (1928-2018) has been deeply touched by the tributes and prayers that have poured in from around the world. A few select messages from the hundreds that were received are embedded within this post.

We thank everyone for their heartfelt prayers. They have given us immense strength and inspiration.

We express our shukrana to Mawlana Hazar Imam for blessing Jehangir with a life of service to the Jamat and the Imam-of-the-Time.

Note: In the photo captions, my parents are referred simply as Jehangir and Maleksultan. I would appreciate if individuals that I have not named in the photos (for fear of making a mistake), please forward me their names by email at simerg@aol.com or complete the feedback form at the bottom of this so that I may revise the captions; when replying please mention the numbered caption.

PHOTOS CREDITS: ARCHIVES OF THE FAMILY OF LATE JEHANGIR ALIBHAI MERCHANT.

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Jehangir and Maleksultan marry

001 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant on Wedding Day - 1

001: Newly wedded Jehangir and Maleksultan, 1952.

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Farewell to India: Jehangir and Maleksultan commence their long and dedicated service to the Jamat and the Imam-of-the-Time

003 Ismaili Poet speaking at Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchants departure reception in Mumbai

002: An Ismaili poet speaks at farewell party for Jehangir and Maleksultan as they prepare to depart for Lourenço Marques to begin their long and devoted services to the Jamat and the Imam-of-the-Time.

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002 Alwaez Jehangir Merchant Family with Colleagues Farewll Reception

003/004: Words of advice and wisdom from mentors and leaders who taught and managed the waezin program from which Jehangir and Maleksultan qualified as waezin and teachers. Seated at far end of table in both photos, above, are family members of Jehangir and Maleksultan.

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004 Alwaez Merchant at the farewell reception in Bombay before his departure for LM

005: Jehangir is garlanded at the farewell party.

005 Alwaez Jehangir Merchant Family with Colleagues and Leaders

006: Jehangir and Maleksultan with their teachers and colleagues at farewell party. Sultanali missionary, a life-long friend, is seen in the photo exactly behind Jehangir.

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006 Lourenco Marques Jamatkhana as pictured in August 1945

007: The lovely Lourenço Marques Jamatkhana where Jehangir and Maleksultan served as teachers and honorary waezin from 1954 until 1962.

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“It is indeed with great sadness we learned the sad loss of our Master Saheb. We pray may Mowla grant and bless his soul an eternal peace and strength and courage to you all to bear his departure.

“I am conveying this message on behalf of Portugal Jamat (the majority of whom are from Lourenço Marques — now Maputo — Mozambique. Everyone simply adored our beloved Master Saheb. He was the one with Maleka Ben who taught and instilled in us all our profound understanding of the Ismaili faith for which were are eternally grateful.” Aziz Noorali and all Lourenço Marques Jamat

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007 Alwaez Merchant joining in a student recitation in Lourenco Marques

008: Students and their teacher Jehangir, fondly known as “Mastersaheb”, leading a prayer at an event held at Lourenço Marques Jamatkhana.

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009 Alwaez Merchant with Loureco Marques Friends

009: Jehangir with friends Noordin, Haider, Tajdin and others at the gate of Lourenço Marques Jamatkhana.

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012 Chaganbhai

010: The unforgettable Chaganbhai who served as jamatbhai of Lourenço Marques.

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013 Nizar Ahmed Mahmed

011: A portrait of Ismaili soldier Nizar Ahmed who drowned when his ship sunk off the coast of Mozambique around the year 1960.

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“An enlightened soul, filled with love, joy and fulfilment. Alwaez has been a beacon of hope and inspiration to all his students around the world for many decades. The legacy he leaves behind is one of spiritual elevation. No doubt he will be missed by those closest to him. His time on this earth has carved an imprint of commitment, dedication, humility and passion from which all those that have shared a part of his journey will reflect upon for many years. As the soul embraces the divine, we shall pray for the eternal peace of his soul!” — Al-Karim

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011 Lourenco Marques Aga Khan Club Cricket Team

012: Jehangir (seated, right) with his Aga Khan Cricket Club team mates in Lourenço Marques.

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010 Alwaez Jehangir ready to bat in a cricket game in Mumbai

013: Jehangir was an all-rounder cricketer — a reliable batsman, a great spinner of the ball as well as an excellent fielder who rarely dropped a catch. When he arrived in Lourenço Marques, only two Ismailis played cricket. He coached Jamati members interested in the game, and created a new team made up of Ismaili players.

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“I am deeply and sincerely sorry for the loss of your father. I hope it comforts you to know that your grief is shared by all of us who knew him. He was a wonderful man and he will be surely missed. I remember him and your mum who taught us with their love and devotion when I was in Dar es Salaam.” — Salima Hirani nèè Jiva

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020 Close Friends Mamdu Bhanji and Family

014: Mamdu Bhanji with his family. Jehangir frequently visited the family.

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016 Close Friends Amir Esmail and wife Farida

015: A beautiful photo of newly married Ferroviário and Mozambique National Team footballer Amirali Ismail and his wife Farida. Amir would often drive Jehangir and his family around the city in his striking blue Zephyr. It gave him the opportunity to engage in lively discussions with Jehangir.

018b Prince Aly Khan signs guest book in Lourenco Marques

016: Ismaili leaders and Jehangir look on as Prince Aly Khan signs the visitors book in the Council chambers at Lourenço Marques Jamatkhana. The Prince visited the Jamat in May 1957.

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018a Prince Aly Khan Mozambique Visit 1958

017: Prince Aly Khan bids farewell to the Lourenço Marques Jamat.

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In May 1958, Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th Imam of Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, visited his followers in South Africa, Mozambique and Madagascar. The small set of photos that follows relate to his visit to Lourenço Marques at the time Jehangir and Maleksultan were serving in Mozambique.

019a Mawlana Hazar Imam entering a classroom in LM

018: Mawlana Hazar Imam visits a classroom of senior students in Lourenço Marques.

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“[Master Saheb] was a teacher to both my parents and it is humbling to realize how many souls he has touched –- and will continue touch with his legacy –- in his noble path of service and sharing knowledge all his life. I look forward to learning more from his articles that I have not read.” — Nina Sacoor

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019b Hazar Imam in LM

019: Mawlana Hazar Imam speaks with the education administrator during a visit to a junior class as Jehangir and students look on.

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019cc Jehangir with Mawlana Hazar Imam in Lourenço Marques

020: Jehangir discusses curriculum material with Mawlana Hazar Imam during his visit to Lourenço Marques. A key question Mawlana Hazar Imam asked Jehangir was whether the meanings of the Holy Dua were being taught to students.

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019d mawlana-hazar-imam-being-shown-needle-work in Lourenco Mrques

021: Portuguese crafts teacher shows Mawlana Hazar Imam a collection of needlework prepared by Ismaili students during his visit to Lourenço Marques.

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019e Hazar Imam in group photo with leaders and teachers of Lourenco Marques

022: Mawlana Hazar Imam with leaders and teachers of the Lourenço Marques Jamat during his visit in 1958. Maleksultan is at left on second row, and Jehangir behind Mawlana Hazar Imam.

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In May 1958, Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th Imam of Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, visited his followers in South Africa, Mozambique and Madagascar. Here he is seen waving from a South African Airways plane as he departs the former Portuguese colonial city of Lourenço Marques (now Maputo), Mozambique, following a 3 day visit. Photo: Jehangir Merchant collection

023: Mawlana Hazar Imam waves from a plane as he departs Lourenço Marques after a 3 day visit.

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Ladies Volunteers LM

Members of the Ismaili ladies volunteer corps, Lourenço Marques.

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021 Sherbanoo Noorali and family

024: The beautiful family of Sherbanoo Noorali (4th from right). The family were loving and caring neighbours of Jehangir and his family in Lourenço Marques.

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026 Jehangir Abually and Mukhi swimming

025: Jehangir (right) with Mukhi of Lourenço Marques Jamatkhana (centre) and Abually missionary swimming in a very calm patch of the Indian Ocean on the outskirts of  Lourenço Marques. Abually, who passed away in Vancouver some years ago, visited Mozambique twice within a span of 2 years in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s.

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“Both Alwaeza and Alwaez have been greatly responsible for my service to the Imam and the Jamat and for that I am most grateful. I have lost a mentor a friend and a parent figure who nurtured me and was a light on my path.

“While we know that he lives in light and mercy of Mawla, he surely leaves a vacuum in our lives, a vacuum that can only be filled with his loving joyful memories.

“My family and I participate in you sadness with prayers for his eternal peace. May Mawla’s love and light, his protection and support and above all his spiritual presence always bless dad with amar shanti and life and abode of peace.” — Bashir Ladha

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014 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with son Malik at park in LM

026: Jehangir and an expectant Maleksultan with their eldest son Abdulmalik at a park in Lourenço Marques.

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015 Close Friends Noordin Ahmed Keshavjee and Family

027: Noordin Ahmed Keshavjee (right) with family members.

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021 Alwaez Merchant in Egypt

028: Jehangir (left) in Egypt with two members of the Lourenço Marques Jamat. Many Ismailis from around the world had travelled to Aswan in 1959 when Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan III, was laid to rest in the mausoleum.

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021a aga-khan-iii-coffin-being-carried

029: Mawlana Hazar Imam, left, his uncle Prince Sadruddin, right, and Prince Amyn at the other end, carrying the shrouded body of Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah from its temporary resting place to the mausoleum in February 1959.

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021b aga-khan-iii-crowd-carries-coffin

030: Mourners watch as the body of the Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah is carried into the mausoleum.

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021c -aga-khan-iii-marble-coffin

031: The marble sarcophagus of Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, 48th Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, under the granite dome of his mausoleum in Aswan.

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021 e aga-khan-iii-funeral-hi-ps-pa

032: Mawlana Hazar Imam is followed by his uncle, Prince Sadruddin (left), and younger brother Prince Amyn at Aswan.

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023 Mawlana Hazar Imam arriving at Karimabad Jamatkhana

033: Mawlana Hazar Imam is received at Karimabad Jamatkhana by Mahomed Mukhi, Jehangir’s oldest brother .

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“Alwaez had not only provided exemplary service for many years to the Imam and the Jamat but he has also touched innumerable lives of the members of the Jamat with his admirable leadership, support, guidance and inspiration. I am amongst them. Not only will he be missed but will also be remembered fondly for many, many years to come.” — Mohamed Manji

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024 Jehangir Merchant sister Banu

034: A beautiful portrait of Jehangir’s youngest sibling and sister, Banu.

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028 Aga Khan Girls Secondary School Teachers Jehangir Merchant

035: Jehangir (standing, centre) with headmistress and staff of the Aga Khan Girls Secondary School, Dar es Salaam. Photo: 1962/63.

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“My heartfelt Dilsoji and Condolences to you and your family. I share the loss of your beloved late father Missionary Saheb Alwaez Jehangir Merchant whose Waezees I was so fortunate to hear in various places at various times.

“My heart goes out…..especially to his wife, Alwaeza Maleksultan Merchant who too has been a remarkable Missionary and I wish to share this bereavement with you and all of his sons, grandchildren his sister, the entire family with strength and Shukrana for his life we all shared of such a great man who achieved so much.” — Zarina Bhatia

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030 Alwaez Jehangir Merchant Family with dadima and nanima

036: Jehangir and Maleksultan with their maternal parents and sons Abdulmalik , Alnoor (centre) and Fahar (right) during their visit to India in 1966.

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031 Alwaez Merchant with Nizar and Faryal

037: Jehangir (right) standing in front of his white Morris Mini (plate TDC 542) with waezin colleague Nizar Chunara and wife Fariyal outside their apartment building on United Nations Road, in Dar es Salaam.

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031a Fahar and Alnoor Merchant with trophies

038: Jehangir’s sons Fahar (left) and Alnoor standing at the steps of Dar es Salaam’s Karimabad Jamatkhana with their newly won Dua competition trophies.

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“Both [Mr. and Mrs. Merchant] played an instrumental part during our development of our ethics and values during our childhood and understanding of the fundamentals of our religion. To this day these teachings have been part of our growth as well as our children and grandchildren.” — Almas and Abdul Allibhai

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030b Mawlana Hazar Imam at Aga Khan Girls as Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant look on

039: Mawlana Hazar Imam visits Aga Khan Girls Secondary School in Dar es Salaam in 1966. Also in photo, the Mukhiani of students mijlas and religious education teachers Maleksultan and Jehangir.

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029 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with Aga Khan Girls Students

040: Jehangir with his students at the Aga Khan Girls Secondary School, Dar es Salaam.

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“I had the good fortune to be taught and nurtured by Alwaez Jehangir Merchant and Alwaeza Mrs Merchant. My heart holds a special place for both of them. Alwaez, you will be missed by many. May Imam-e-Zaman bless your soul with eternal peace and rest. Ameen.” — Mohamed Bhimji

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032 Alwaez Merchant at a farewell gathering before his departure from Tanzania

041: Jehangir speaking at a farewell party held in his honour at the Darkhana reading room before his departure from Dar es Salaam where he served with the Ismailia Association for 10 years as a religious education teacher, inspector of religious education as well as an honorary waezin. During his term he also founded the pocket-sized “Read and Know” magazine. Abually missionary can be seen in the photo in dark suit to the right of Jehangir. In the foreground, with glasses, is the Ismailia Association Chairman.

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033 Alwaez Merchant on route to India on SS Victoria

042: A waiter on Italian steamer Victoria attends to Jehangir, his son Abdulmalik and two Sikh passengers during their journey from Mombasa to Mumbai and Karachi in 1972.

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034 Alwaez Jehangir, Kassmali Missionary and others

043: Jehangir (standing, 3rd from left) in a group photo in Karachi that includes Kassamali Missionary, President of the Ismailia Association for Pakistan. Jehangir served as an honorary waezin during his short stay in Pakistan after leaving Dar es Salaam. He and Maleksultan then were on the road in 1974 for more than a year on an official Waez tour of Europe, USA and Canada before they joined the Ismailia Association for the UK in 1975 for professional duties as teachers and Waezin.

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“I do have some fond memories of your parents as they were the pillars of our Jamats around East Africa. They were also friends of my parents and together with my dad [Master Devani] served the Jamat in Dar es Salaam for many years. Both your mom and dad were great teachers, mentors and amazing missionaries of our times. They cared for all Jamati members wherever they went or settled.” — Shah Abdulla

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043 Alwaez Merchant at a UK Youth Camp

044: Jehangir introduces himself at an Ismaili youth camp in the United Kingdom.

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045 Alwaez Merchant with youth at a camp

045: Jehangir conducts a session at an Ismaili youth camp in the United Kingdom.

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045c Alwaez Merchant being acknowledged for his contribution at a UK Ismaili Youth Camp

046: Jehangir is thanked for being a facilitator at a youth camp.

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“Inevitable as it is that each one of us must eventually pass on, the passing of your beloved father, Alwaez Jehangir Merchant, evokes sadness and a unique sense of loss for so many of us who held him in high respect and admiration.

“I personally had the opportunity to work with Alwaez Jehangir on various occasions, including some Imamat events, and always came away impressed by his knowledge and wisdom, as also his dedication, principles and candour.” — Eqbal Rupani

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Jehangir developed curriculum that was used within the religious education system in the United Kingdom prior to the development of the Institute of Ismaili Studies’ primary and secondary curricula.

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036dd Alwaez Merchant with Diwan Eboo and Ismaili missionaries and scholars at a Nairobi conference 2

047: Jehangir (standing, second row, right) represented the Ismailia Association for the UK in numerous conferences abroad. Here he is shown with delegates attending a conference in Nairobi, Kenya, during the 1970’s. Seated on front row (l to r): Akbar Ladak, Remtulla Abdulla, Diwan Sir Eboo, Idris Rupani, Eqbal Rupani, Amir Mawji and Mohammad Adra.

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036c Alwaez Jehangir addressing a seminar attended by UK leadership

048: Jehangir giving an address at an event in London. Looking on are the President of the Ismailia Assocation for the UK, Aziz Kurwa, the President of the Aga Khan Council for the UK, Amir Bhatia, Anil Ishani, Farouk Topan and others.

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20 Year Imamat Amnniversary Postcard of Jamatkhanas Large

049: A postcard produced on the occasion of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s 20th Imamat Day celebrations on July 11, 1977 showing photos of four Ismaili Jamatkhanas – Kharadar and Garden (top row, both Karachi), and Upanga (bottom left, Dar es Salaam).

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“I am truly upset to learn about Jehangirbhai’s sad loss. We worked very well as a team in the Ismailia Association in London. He was a serious guide and together with Malekbai I had a formidable team. Both of you supported my work and guided me all the time.

“I had developed quite a bond with him and Malekbai. Alwaez Jehangir’s regular publications of Ilm magazines have become a special collectors items and at my suggestion he was happy to start Gujarati magazines too.

“The knowledge that he and Malekbai spread amongst young students in UK and abroad lives in the heart of thousands. There was not a situation where Malekbai and Jehangirbhai did not have the right guidance to offer. Diwan Sir Eboo always admired their devotion and knowledge. The Ismaili world will miss them and remember them for a long time.

“With all our reverance and prayers for his soul.” — Dr. Aziz Kurwa, President, Ismailia Association for the UK.

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036b fatimid-coins presentation to Hazar Ima by Aziz Kurwa

050: Mawlana Hazar Imam is seen receiving a report of the UK Ismailia Association’s activities as well as a set of Fatimid Gold Dinars from President Dr. Aziz Kurwa at the student mulaqat held in London during September 1979.

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036 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant at Lit Counter desk 1979 Visit

051: Jehangir and Maleksultan (both 4th from right) with team members who helped at the Ismailia Association’s literature counter at Olympia Hall, London, during the 1979 visit of Mawlana Hazar Imam.

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Alwaeza Merchant with Begum Salimah and Gulzar Muller

052: Gulzar (centre) introduces Maleksultan to Begum Salimah Aga Khan at a function held in London during Mawlana Hazar Imam’s week long visit to the Jamat of the United Kingdom in September 1979.

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“He was a mentor to me. He brought new energy into me and was vital force in my activities. He was very encouraging in all my innovations of DAWA.” — Missionary Dr. Amirali Gillani.

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038b Alnoor with dad and mum at London Silver Jubilee

053: Jehangir and Maleksultan with their son Alnoor during the Silver Jubilee visit of Mawlana Hazar Imam to London.

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036e Maleksultan at stage during Hazar Imam 1979 visit

054: Mawlana Hazar Imam addressing the Jamat during his September 1979 Mulaqat to London, with Maleksultan on stage duty, seated at the far left corner. Others present on stage are Mukhi Jivraj, Kamadia Dhanani and their spouses.

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“Alwaez was a very soft spoken intelligent and well read person, who shared with us the 10 page letter he wrote to ITREB UK in 1996 regarding sukreet. Both your mum and dad as alwaezes worked closely with our Baitul Ilm and were always a great source of support to the jamat.” — Islamshah Rahemtulla

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038c Alwaeza and Alwaeza Merchant in front of a gigantic portrait of Mawlana Hazar Imam

055: Jehangir and Maleksultan in front of a large portrait photo of Mawlana Hazar Imam.

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038a Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant in Paris with GB and Others

056: Jehangir and Malkesulan Merchant pictured with France’s — and previously Tanzania’s — Ismailia Association President G.B. Janmohamed and his wife. Also in the photo are Jehangir’s counterparts in Europe Mohamed Jivraj (left) and Abdulaziz Bhimji (right), who also served with him in East Africa.

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“It is with profound sadness that I learnt of your Dad’s passing away. We were neighbours in Dar and I remember how well he carried himself and that contagious smile. He, together with your Mum, have provided such valuable service to the Jamat, in the field of awareness and tariqa matters. He remained a Gem to his last and will be sorely missed. May Allah rest his soul in eternal peace. Ameen.” — Moez Merali

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038 Alwaez and Alwaeza at the Paris Mulaqat

057: Jehangir in discussion with missionary Rahim Bana during a duty in Europe in the early 1980’s.

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035 Jehangir with Religious education teachers shown and leadership and staff of the UK Ismailia Association

058: Jehangir with Ismailia Association staff, members and teachers who served under President Aziz Kurwa (seated, 3rd from left).

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046 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with senior students of BUI Central London July 1992

059: Jehangir and Maleksultan with Mukhi Gulu Ramji and Kamadia Jivraj of London’s Darkhana Jamatkhana, members of the Ismaili Tariqah and Religious Board Board, Baitul Ilm teachers and youth.

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“A great Ismaili stalwart. I could call on him when I was Mukhi in Nottingham, UK. “Wa Ada Khilna Dar e Salaam”. May Mawlana Hazar Imam shower his blessings on him and usher him in abode of peace. Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Raji’un. Amen.” — Karim Meru

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041 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with UK ITREB Colleagues

060: Jehangir and Maleksultan with UK Tariqah Board Chairman Noordin Kasssam and colleagues Bashir Ladha, Sadru Hasham, Rehman and Gulam Abbas.

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050 Alwaez Jehangir with brother Abdulmoahmed, sister-in-law Sakina and their family

061: Jehangir (4th from left) pictured with his brother Abdulmohamed and sister-in-law Sakina and their family during a visit to Madrid, Spain.

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039 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with son Fahar and family

062: Jehangir and Maleksultan at their London home with son Fahar, his wife Nina and grandson Naim visiting from Canada.

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040 Alwaez and Alwaeza Jehangir with Chairman and members of ITREB and Waezin Colleagues UK

063: Jehangir and Maleksultan (seated at either end) with leaders and members of UK’s Ismaili Tariqah and Religious Education Board at rooftop of London’s Ismaili Centre.

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“I still have all the religious knowledge books prepared by him for us voluntary teachers who he had trained to deliver in the classrooms for the murids who had not so long before had just arrived in a new country….this was a new very exciting approach in teaching our young new generation of students religious knowledge.” — Mohamood Jumani

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042 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with Topan and Gowar

064: Jehangir and Maleksultan with Farouk Topan (left) and Gowar Bhatia.

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048 Alwaez Jehangir receiving grateful thanks from President Sachedina on the occasion of his retirement

065: Jehangir and Maleksultan are recognized by the UK Council and ITREB leadership during the Misbah al-Ilm graduation ceremony as they retire from institutional services in a professional capacity. They continued serving in an honorary capacity.

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049 Alwaez Jehangir speaks on the occasion of their retirement reception

066: Alwaeza Maleksultan, Council President Shafik Sachedina and ITREB Chairman Amir Gulamhussein look on as Alwaez Jehangir gives a retirement speech on behalf of himself and his wife to members and teachers of the Tariqah Board.

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047 Alwaez and Alwaeza at an Al-Misbah graduating ceremony on the occasion of retirement

067: Jehangir and Maleksultan with the graduating class of Misbah al-Ilm.

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049a Ilm Mgazine Edited by Jehangir Merchant

068: Ilm magazine: One of Jehangir’s magnificent contributions to the Ismaili literary scene. Jehangir edited and wrote extensively for the journal. Many of his original pieces published in Ilm are now on http://www.simerg.com.

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A few of many essays written by Jehangir Merchant that have been posted on Simerg.

  1. Ghadir-Khumm and the Two Weighty Matters (a Simerg original, I Wish I’d Been There Series)
  2. An Esoteric Interpretation of the Mi’raj (adapted from Ilm magazine)
  3. The Establishment of the Fatimid Caliphate (adapted from Ilm magazine)
  4. Jehangir Merchant’s Thank You Letter to Da’i Al-Mu’ayyad al-Shirazi (a Simerg original, Thank You Series)

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“I met Alwaez Jehangir Merchant for the first time at the Institute of Ismaili Studies where he was a frequent visitor and subsequently at the Jamatkhana in London. I remember him as a very knowledgeable but humble person — as a ‘”Good Guy’” — a nice person.

“He surprised me with an act of kindness which became a lasting memory of him — he gave me a picture of Mawlana Hazar Imam in a beautiful golden frame. This photograph is centrally positioned in the bedroom and when we look at it — first thing in the morning and last thing at night — it reminds me of who gave it to me. May your soul be swiftly reunited with the Creator.” — Nizar Motani

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050 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with Nurin

069: Jehangir and Maleksultan in Ottawa, Canada, with newly born granddaughter Nurin, daughter of Abdulmalik and Rozina.

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052 Nurin enjoying a shoulder lift by her grandfather Alwaez Merchant

070: A slightly older Nurin has fun as she is lifted on her dada’s shoulder, with her dadi standing beside them.

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027 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant with Hussein Ali and Bashir

071: Jehangir and Maleksultan visiting Hussein Aly (now deceased) and Bashir of Lourenço Marques at their Toronto home. The late Hirbanu’s portrait hangs on the wall behind them.

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051 Alwaez and Alwaeza Merchant at Niagara Falls

072: Jehangir and Maleksultan at the floral clock near Niagara Falls.

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“My late husband Alwaez Sadru Pradhan and I had many opportunities to meet with your parents. They used to share their experiences and knowledge.” — Yasmin Pradhan

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053 Alwaez Jehangir and other Missionaries

073: Clockwise from left — With waezin colleagues Sadru Pradhan (deceased), Abually Allibhai (deceased) , Amirali Amlani (deceased), JEHANGIR (now deceased), Sultanali Mohamed, Fateh Damji and Ali Rajabali.

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054 Alwaez and Alwaeza Jehangir, Karim Gulamali and and other Missionaries

074: Jehangir and Maleksultan with waezin colleagues Karim Gulamali (left) and Sultan Nazerali (deceased).

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“In the passing away of Alwaez Jehangir Merchant I have lost a confidant, a friend and a source of knowledge and wisdom that I will greatly miss. He was my Go to Person for Tariqah matters and was always willing to share.” — Amin Jamal

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055 Alwaez Jehangir Kissing Alwaeza on their 50th anniversary

075: Jehangir plants a kiss on Malekesultan on their 50th wedding anniversary at a surprise party thrown by Ismaili missionaries.

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056 Alwaez Merchant address by Alwaez Abually

076: Missionary Abually gives remarks at the 50th wedding anniversary party for Maleksultan and Jehangir.

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057 Alwaez and Alwaeza at Gatineau Park 2007 with Malik

077: Jehangir and Maleksultan with their son Abdulmalik at Gatineau Park’s Pink Lake during their autumn 2007 visit to Ottawa.

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“Whist I only met him briefly at our first dinner [at VJ’s], he left an indelible light on the spirit of his presence. A beautiful person. I will never forget him and our meeting.” — Bruno Freschi

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Bruno Freschi, architect of the Ismaili Centre in Burnaby with Jehangir, Nurin and Abdulmalik at VJ’s restaurant.

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061 Jehangir_Maleksultan_Nurin_Queen Elizabeth Park Vancouver

078: Jehangir and Maleksultan visit Queen Elizabeth Park with granddaughter Nurin.

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060 Jehangir_and_Maleksultan_Queen Elizabeth Pk

079: Jehangir and Maleksultan get a majestic view of one of the gardens at Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Park.

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“Alwaez’s long and devoted service to the house of Imam and the Jamat, particularly in the field of our Tariqah will be long remembered. Many future generations will continue to benefit from the knowledge he and your mother produced and shared. We both also learnt a lot from them.” — Zarina and Kamaluddin

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061a Nurin commences her veterinary science studies at the University of Guelph

080: Jehangir’s granddaughter Nurin in a blue coat as she commences her 4-year Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program in 2015 at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph.

 

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“No words or letters can or will adequately describe the long and illustrious journey of Alwaez’s life long dedication to the History and Practice of our Tariqah, its teachings and understanding through centuries. Together with your dear Mother and family your are truly fortunate of Allah’s immense Blessing upon you.” — Amir Rashid and Shah Begum

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Jehangir at Burnaby Mountain Park

081: Jehangir, a lover of nature, visits the fabulous Burnaby Mountain Park with a view of the waters and the mountains.

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062 Jehangir recognized with a long service certificate

082: Jehangir is presented with a special certificate for his long and devoted services to the Jamat and Imam-of-the-Time.

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“I for one will always cherish in my heart the memory of his ever-smiling face which represented humility, vast knowledge, great wisdom and true love and compassion.” — Mansoor Waljee

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00 Jehangir Merchant Portrait Queen Elizabeth Park Vancouver Cropped for Simerg

083: Jehangir at Queen Elizabeth Park.

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“He and Mrs. Merchant were pivotal to us understanding the core of our faith. That is a gift only a few can give to others and they gave it to hundreds.” — Anise Waljee

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Jehangir Merchant and Maleksultan Merchant at BC Palace

084: Jehangir and Maleksultan pictured prior to the Diamond Jubilee Mulaqat with Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan. Photo: Raiya Suleman.

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“Inna li’llahi was inna ilaihi raajeoon. Shukher Alhamdulillah;
A peaceful man with a peaceful end of the journey! I loved listening to his Waezes. May his soul Rest in Peace! Ameen!!” — Hakam Bhallo

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Grave of Jehangir Merchant (1928 - 2018)

085: Grave of Alwaez Jehangir Alibhai Merchant (December 13, 1928 to May 27, 2018) bearing a temporary plaque with his name. He was buried on Thursday, May 31, 2018 at Victory Memorial Park.

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“Jehangir was an inspiration to our whole community. May Allah bless him Jhannat.” Countess Dolathkhanu Jinnah

Date posted: September 11, 2018.

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