草榴社区

Aga Khan III and Aga Khan IV with His Highness the Aga Khan Ismailia Provincial Council of Nairobi, 22nd April 1945.

Imam Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan III and Prince Karim al-Hussaini Aga Khan IV with His Highness the Aga Khan Ismailia Provincial Council of Nairobi, 22nd April 1945.

President Manji Janmohamed (seated to the right of Aga Khan III) served as President of both the Ismaili Councils in Kisumu and Nairobi from 1930 to 1946 consecutively.

Housed at the Ismaili Special Collections Unit are heritage items relating to different individuals and their histories. One such collection of items is donated by Mukhi Fatehali Count Manji Janmohamed. The donated photographs and archival materials relate to his parents, Count Manji Janmohamed and Countess Santokbai Manji. Manji Janmohamed served the Imam and the 草榴社区 community from 1915 to 1946. During his tenure, he served as a Major in the Ismaili Volunteer Corps, Mukhi of Nairobi Darkhana Jamatkhana, and then as President of both the Ismaili Councils in Kisumu and Nairobi from 1930s to 1946 one after the other.

Born in Gadhda, Kathiawar, India, on 14 August 1894, Count Manji Janmohamed was from the Verjee family of East Africa, the son of Janmohamed Hasham Verjee. The fervour of serving community institutions ran in the family as his father, Alijah Janmohamed Hasham Verjee was President of the Mombasa Ismailia Council in the early 1900s.聽

Manji Janmohamed came to Mombasa, Kenya, with his father in 1900, where he took up early residence and joined the family business.聽 He was married to Santok, daughter of Ahamed Velji.聽 They moved from Mombasa to Kisumu in the 1920s where he started his own business.聽 In 1933, he moved his business from Kisumu to Nairobi where he owned the famed textile store 鈥淗usseini Silk Store鈥 on Government Road.

Husseini Silk Store was honoured to outfit many luminaries, including both His Highness Aga Khan III and Her Highness the Begum Aga Khan. In her letter of acknowledgement dated April 29, 1945, the Begum Aga Khan, more commonly known amongst Ismailis as Mata Salamat, wrote to Husseini Silk Store: 鈥溾t is with great pleasure that I write this to say the work you did for me was most excellent and indeed I know of no house in Europe that could have done it better, with my best thanks. Yours Faithfully, Yves Aga Khan.鈥 聽

Aga Khan III with the family of President Manji Janmohamed in Nairobi, August 1946

Imam Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan III with the family of President Manji Janmohamed in Nairobi, August 1946

Manji Janmohamed served the Imam and the 草榴社区 community from 1915 to 1946. He presided during the auspicious occasions of Imam Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan III鈥檚 Golden Jubilee in 1937 in Nairobi and was also involved in the Diamond Jubilee in 1946 in Dar-es-Salaam. Among his services were the building of a jamatkhana for the Ismailis and a masjid for Sunni Muslims in Nairobi.

Aga Khan III at his Golden Jubilee Celebration at Nairobi Parklands Ground on March 1st, 1937

Aga Khan III at his Golden Jubilee Celebration at Nairobi Parklands Ground on 1st March 1937.

President Manjee Janmohamed is standing behind Aga Khan III, with Divan Jindani to his left and the Governor of Kenya to Aga Khan III's extreme left.

He rendered outstanding services in preparation of the 1937 Golden Jubilee darbar and related arrangements prior to and during the Jubilee celebrations in Nairobi. A little-known fact is that Imam Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan III led 鈥業d Namaz on the grounds of the Aga Khan Club on 2nd February 1937. Prince Karim al-Hussaini Aga Khan IV also, as a young boy, recited 鈥業d Namaz in Nairobi (President Manji Janmohamed is shown in his ceremonial jabba and turban, behind the Imams in both the photographs, along with other dignitaries.)

Aga Khan III reciting 鈥業d Namaz in Nairobi on February 2, 1937

His Highness Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan III reciting 鈥業d Namaz in Nairobi on 2nd February 1937

Aga Khan IV reciting 鈥業d Namaz

Prince Karim al-Hussaini Aga Khan IV, as a young child, reciting 鈥業d Namaz

Behind Prince Amyn Mohamed are President Manji Janmohamed (left) and Diwan Jindani (right)

On 20 September 1952, Vazir Janmohamed was bestowed the title of 鈥淐ount鈥 by Imam Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan III.聽 After Manji Janmohamed鈥檚 demise, Countess Santokbai took keen interest in the Council activities as well as philanthropic activities such as supporting educational initiatives for special schools for differently-abled children.聽

Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan and Countess Santokbai

Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan and Countess Santokbai

Taliqa

Countess Santokbai鈥檚 service to the Jamats in supporting educational initiatives for special schools was praised by His Highness Prince Karim al-Hussaini Aga Khan IV (May 1954)

The Count was survived by his wife, two daughters and four sons, including Mukhi Fatehali Count Manji Janmohmamed one of whom has donated this collection to the Institute in his parents鈥 memory.聽