Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, is Well into the 7th Decade of His Imamat: Our Pictorial Series Looks at Years 61-64 of His Hereditary Reign

Compiled and prepared by MALIK MERCHANT
(Publisher-Editor, BarakahSimerg and Simergphotos)

I know the power of your network; I know what you have built. And we need more networks of people determined to say this is a world of good, this is a world of standing by each other, and this is what we honor here tonight — Josette Sheeran, Asia Society, November 1, 2017

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, poses for a photo in October 2018 following a ceremony where he was conferred with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree by the University of Calgary in recognition of his “impact and spirit,” which Chancellor Deborah Yedlin noted “have been felt by millions of people.” Photo: The Ismaili/Asif Bhalesha.

Barakah is pleased to present a pictorial overview of the first four years in the seventh decade of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Imamat, as Ismailis all around world prepare to celebrate the completion of his 64 years of Imamat on July 11, 2021. The presentation is being made in four parts in the days leading to and after Imamat Day. The series will conclude on August 11.

Part 1 (this post) will cover the period from July 11, 2017 until July 10, 2018; part 2 will be dedicated to the grand Darbar in Lisbon in July 2018 as well as cover other events that took place after the Darbar until July 10 2019; part 3 will take us to July 2020, and part 4 will bring us to July 11, 2021.

It is our sincere prayer and hope that six years hence, on July 11, 2027, we will Inshallah celebrate Mawlana Shah Karim al Hussaini Hazar Imam’s 70 years of Imamat. He would then become only the second Imam in Ismaili history to complete the Platinum Jubilee, like his beloved grandfather and our beloved 48th Imam, Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan III. Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah was born on November 2, 1877, and became the Imam on August 17, 1885 at the age of 7. When he bequeathed his Hereditary Divine Authority to Mawlana Hazar Imam on July 11, 1957, his rule had lasted for 71 years.

It may be noted however that our beloved 49th Imam, Mawlana Hazar Imam, at the age of 84, is the oldest living Imam in Ismaili history and no one else has lived that long; his grandfather passed away at the age of 79.

In presenting this post, we invite our readers to click on the links shown at the bottom of this post for reflections of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s first six decades of Imamat from 1957 to 2017 published in The Ismaili, the official website of the Ismaili community.

Part 1: The Diamond Jubilee Year – Milestones, Darbars and Honours

2017

July 11, 2017: Paris, France – The Homage Ceremony and the Commencement of the Diamond Jubilee Year
Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee Homage Ceremony July 11, 2015.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, flanked by flags of the Ismaili Imamat (left) and the Diamond Jubilee commemorative logo, makes his appearance at the Homage Ceremony on July 11, 2017, to celebrate his Diamond Jubilee. The ceremony was held at his residence and Imamat Headquarters at Aiglemont in France.
A view of the famous red and green flag of the Ismaili Imamat, bearing the crest of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, in the centre. The inset image shows the flag beside Mawlana Hazar Imam at the signing of the new Ismaili Constitution on the occasion of his 50th birthday on December 13, 1986.
Diamond Jubilee Logo of His Highness the Aga Khan
The Diamond Jubilee Logo: At the centre of the emblem is the Imam’s crest. The sixty crescents surrounding the crest represent the sixty years of the spiritual leadership of Mawlana Hazar Imam. The outer ring embodies a verse from the Holy Qur’an (Sura 49, Ayat 13) rendered in Early Kufic calligraphy, which translates as follows: O humankind! Indeed We created you male and female And We made you [diverse] peoples and tribes So that you may come to know one another. Indeed the noblest among you In the sight of Allah is the most pious. Indeed Allah is All-Knowing and All-Aware.
Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee Homage
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, and members of his family at the Homage Ceremony on July 11, 2017 which marked the commencement of his Diamond Jubilee Year, and the start of the 7th decade of his Imamat. Photo: AKDN/Zahur Ramji
Leaders representing the worldwide Ismaili community adorned in formal regalia walk solemnly at the grounds of Mawlana Hazar Imam His Highness the Aga Khan’s residence in Aiglemont, France, to participate in their Imam’s Diamond Jubilee Homage Ceremony on July 11, 2017.

Homage – A Murid’s Yearning

BY JALAL JAFFER

The gracious smile
The loving eyes
The unspoken words
A symbolic embrace
Extend a gracious welcome
For each and every murid
From the mountains of Tajikistan
To the plains of Africa, 
From the northern areas of Pakistan 
To the forgotten continent of Australia 
Through the Leaders, past and present.

And in a majestic flair
A kingly benevolence
The Murshid accepts the Homage
From and on behalf of His global Jamats.

Ismailis in Montreal take selfies in front of the stage at Stad Uniprix following Mawlana Hazar Imam His Highness the Aga Khan’s Homage Ceremony that was relayed to Jamats around the world on July 11, 2017. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

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July 20, 2017: Lisbon, Portugal, Awards and Honours

On July 20, 2017, Portugal’s President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa presented His Highness the Aga Khan with the Gra-cruz da ordem de Liberdade in recognition of his service to uplifting lives around the world.
On July 20, 2017, Portugal’s President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa presented Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, with the Gra-cruz da ordem de Liberdade in recognition of his service to uplifting lives around the world. Photo: AKDN/Antonio Pedrosa.

“I reiterate my profound appreciation for our own partnership, and for honouring me and by extension the Ismaili Imamat and the AKDN, especially as this honour comes during my Diamond Jubilee year, marking 60 years as the 49th Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims worldwide. Our commitment to Portugal reflects our deep respect for this country and our deep affection for its people.” — His Highness the Aga Khan, Lisbon, July 20, 2017.

His Highness the Aga Khan delivers his acceptance remarks upon receiving an Honorary Doctorate from Universidade NOVA de Lisboa as Dr. Francisco Pinto Balsemão, Patron of the Doctorate looks on. | AKDN/Antonio Pedrosa
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, delivers his acceptance remarks upon receiving an Honorary Doctorate from Universidade NOVA de Lisboa as Dr. Francisco Pinto Balsemão, Patron of the Doctorate looks on. July 20, 2017. Photo: AKDN/Antonio Pedrosa.

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September 12, 2017: Prince Amyn Aga Khan Becomes 80

Prince Amyn Aga Khan turned 80 on September 12, 2017, two months into the Diamond Jubilee Celebrations of Mawlana Hazar Imam. Though discreet and always working behind the scenes, Prince Amyn’s contribution to the Imamat institutions have always been influential and impactful. His commitment for human dignity, global peace and humanism is reflected by his creative ingenuity in multiple dimensions of human endeavor. For more than fifty years now, he has dedicated his entire life in the service of the Institution of Imamat, channeling his creativity, intelligence, time and energy, knowledge and leadership in numerous Imamat endeavours benefiting both jamati and non-jamati constituencies. 

Aga Khan and Prince Amyn
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan (left), and his younger brother Prince Amyn Muhammad Aga Khan pictured together at a ceremony held in November 2010 in Paris when the Government of France conferred them with honours for their contributions to culture, both personally and through the activities of the Aga Khan Development Network. Photo: Farida Brechemier Guerdjou//MCC via the Ismaili.

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October 8-11, 2017: Uganda, Diamond Jubilee Visit

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, is conferred with the Most Excellent Order of the Pearl of Africa by His Excellency President Yoweri Museveni, as part of Uganda’s 55th Independence Day celebration on October 9, 2015.

“Your national pathway has been exciting and inspiring to watch and all your friends, including of course myself, look to the future of Uganda in hope, in aspiration, for a better quality of life for all the people of Uganda and of this region of Africa…Our institutions have been here for many decades, [and] it is my hope today that they will participate in improving the quality of life of all the people of Eastern Africa as they build for future generations.” – His Highness the Aga Khan, Uganda, October 9, 2017.

Kampala Ismaili Jamatkhana, Barakah
The Kampala Ismaili Darkhana Jamatkhana is illuminated for the Diamond Jubilee visit of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan. Photo: The Ismaili
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, shares a light moment with the Jamat during the Diamond Jubilee Darbar in Kampala on October 10, 2017. Photo: The Ismaili/Zahur Ramji.

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October 11-12, 2017: Tanzania, Diamond Jubilee Visit

Highness the Aga Khan, was in Tanzania at the invitation of His Excellency President of the United Republic of Tanzania Dr. John P. Magufuli
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, was in Tanzania at the invitation of His Excellency President of the United Republic of Tanzania Dr. John P. Magufuli (d. 2021). Shortly after leaving the airport, Mawlana Hazar Imam visited the President at the State House (also known as Ikulu or the White House) and was hosted to a lunch in his honour. In the photo, the President welcomes His Highness to Ikulu. Photo: State House.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, at the Diamond Jubilee Darbar in Dar es Salaam. He gave guidance to the Ismailis who were in attendance and conveyed blessings for the global Jamat. A gift of eight Fatimid coins minted in Al Mahdia for the first eight Fatimid Imams was presented to Mawlana Haza Imam by the Tanzanian Jamat. Photo: The Ismaili/Zahur Ramji.
Before departing Dar es Salaam, Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, was presented with a gift of First Day Covers and Commemorative Stamps printed by the Tanzania Postal Service Corporation in honour of his Diamond Jubilee. The First Day Covers and Commemorative stamps depict various themes in which AKDN is active in East Africa, as well as the Diamond Jubilee motif.
Mawlana Hazar Imam is greeted by Aga Khan Scouts and Guides, as he leaves Diamond Jubilee Hall after the Darbar. Photo: The Ismaili/Zahur Ramji.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, is greeted by Aga Khan Scouts and Guides, as he leaves Dar es Salaam’s Diamond Jubilee Hall after the Diamond Jubilee Darbar. Photo: The Ismaili/Zahur Ramji.

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October 18, 2017: New York, Champion for Global Change Award

Kofi Annan and Aga Khan
(Late) Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary-General, presents on behalf of The United Nations Association of the United States of America (UNA-USA) and the United Nations Foundation, the Champion for Global Change Award to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, at a special United Nations Global Leadership gala dinner held in New York on October 18, 2017. Photo: The Ismaili/Akbar Hakim/Mairaj Manji.

For a long time, political debate all around the world focused on the competing merits of government action versus private enterprise.  My conviction, which has deepened through the years, is that these are false alternatives. The question is not which sector can be most effective in the march towards progress – the central question is how these sectors can best become effective partners in this quest. The concept of public-private partnerships has been one of the keys to the best work of our agencies….The public-private partnership formula alone, however, is incomplete – unless we also insert the words “Civil Society”…. The partnerships that will most dramatically change the world are those in which all three components – private, public and civil society institutions – can connect one with the another in all-embracing common effort…. fundamental to all of this, of course, is a basic philosophical commitment which is expressed by another important word and that word is “pluralism”.  This is a frame of mind which regards diversity, multiplicity, and indeed difference itself – not as a burden nor a threat but as a gift – a Gift of the divine – an opportunity to learn rather than a danger to be avoided. – His Highness the Aga Khan, excerpts from speech made at the United Nations Global Leadership Dinner, October 18, 2017, New York.

Secretary General Antonio Guterres meeting with H.H. Prince Karim Aga Khan
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres (right) meets with Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, at the UN on October 18, 2017. Photo credit: UN Photo/Eskender Debebe.

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November 1, 2017: New York, Asia Society, Asia Game Changer Lifetime Achievement Award

 We  know the power of your work; I know the power of your network; I know what you have built. And we need more networks of people determined to say this is a world of good, this is a world of standing by each other, and this is what we honor here tonight — Asia Society’s President Asia Society’s Josette Sheeran, November 1, 2017

Asia Society President and CEO Josette Sheeran greets Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, prior to the Asia Society Game Changer awards on November 1, 2017. Photo: Jamie Watts/Asia Society.
Aga Khan Game Changer Award
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, being presented Asia Society’s 2017 Asia Game Changer Lifetime Achievement Award by former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and Sharon Rockefeller on November 1, 2017. Photo: AKDN/Akbar Hakim/Mairaj Manji.

Any leader of any global community hopes and prays for one thing – peace; peace in every community, in every country of the world, so that men and women can live in safety, build their futures with strength, courage, hope and wisdom. These are the values that the leaders of my community, my institutions and myself, are intimately linked with and will continue to work for, for many, many decades ahead.” – His Highness the Aga Khan, Asia Game Changer Award, November 1, 2017

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A MUST SEE SHORT VIDEO OF REMARKS MADE BY MAWLANA HAZAR IMAM

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Citation New York Governor for Diamond Jubilee Aga Khan
Lieutenant Governor of the State of New York, Kathy Hochul (left), holding a framed copy of the citation presented by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, for his Diamond Jubilee. Also pictured with Mawlana Hazar Imam are Michael Bloomberg, and Sharon Rockefeller. Photo: AKDN/Akbar Hakim/ Mairaj Manji
Aga Khan Citation by Governor Cuomo
An image of the citation presented by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan for his Diamond Jubilee.

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November 15, 2017: Ottawa, Canada, Inaugural Global Pluralism Award Ceremony

As you have heard, I am currently marking sixty years in the role I inherited in 1957.  This role has taught me a great deal about the challenges of pluralism — about the way those challenges can be met, but also the way those challenges are growing.  These are not new challenges, they are as old as the human race. They include the human temptation to define our personal identities by what we are against — rather than what we are for. They include the temptation to view difference, whenever it may appear, as something that might complicate one’s life, rather than as something that can enrich one’s life. And they include the sometimes instinctive reaction that difference is a threat to be avoided rather than an opportunity to be embraced….Their [the awards’] essential purpose is to share the power of inspiring examples with an ever-wider Community of Pluralism all across our world, a Community that will then create a growing momentum for inclusion — rather than exclusion – as a way to respond to the changes of our world. — His Highness the Aga Khan, November 15, 2017, Inaugural Global Pluralism Award Ceremony

Aga Khan Inaugural Global Pluralism Award
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, with winners and honourable mentions of the first Pluralism Award held in Ottawa on November 15, 2017 at the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat Building. Photo: © Jean-Marc Carisse.

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November 2017: Toronto and Montreal, Diamond Jubilee Visits to Eastern Canada

Ismaili children Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee
Ismaili children in Montreal prepare decorated plates before Mawlana Hazar Imam His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubiliee visit to Eastern Canada in November 2017. Photo: Muslim Harji.

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December 2017: Islamabad, Gilgit-Baltistan, Chitral and Karachi, Diamond Jubilee Visit

Aga Khan at Presidential Palace Pakistan Diamond Jubilee
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, receives a bouquet of flowers upon arrival at the Aiwan-e-Sadr ( the Presidential Palace) in Islamabad as President Mamnoon Hussain and Princess Zahra look on. Photo: The Ismaili/Photo: Akbar Hakim
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan’s Darbar locations (approximate) during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Pakistan in December 2017 – Garam Chashma, (Lower Chitral), Booni (Upper Chitral), Yasin (Gligit-Baltistan) and Aliabad (Gilgit-Baltistan)
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highmess the Aga Khan, addresses the Jamat during the Diamond Jubilee Darbar at Booni, Upper Chitral, in December 2017. Photo: The Ismaili.

The Darbar at Yassin

By IZZAT SHAH

I was bestowed Didar Mubarak and Darbar in the glorious pandal at Yassin, as I belong to Yassin Valley. We the Jamat in Yassin feel extremely fortunate and lucky as Mawlana Hazar Imam gave us his loving blessings and unmmeasurable affection at our door step. Through this Didar, he gave us the splendid chance to serve those Jamaats who had come from the rural areas of Northern Pakistan. We did the very best we could for those who had come from far and wide. Mawlana Hazar Imam was very happy during the Didar and gave us a loving Farman and conveyed his loving blessings with deep affection. He came thrice on the stage and I have no words to explain how I feel at the moment. I pray for the happiness of each and every Ismaili brother and sister living in the world today.

Ismaili youth in Passu, a town north of Aliabad, Hunza, etch the words “Diamond Jubilee” on the lower slopes of the Cathedral Mountains in preparation for the Diamond Jubilee visit of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, to Pakistan in December 2017. Photo: Sadrudin Sakhi.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan grants a Darbar to the Jamat in Aliabad, Hunza, during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Pakistan in December 2017. Photo: The Ismaili/Razi ud Din.
An aerial shot of the Jamat gathering for Mawlana Hazar Imam His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee Darbar at Taus, Yasin in December 2017. Photo: The Ismaili

The Darbar at Aliabad, Hunza

By FAQIR ULLAN KHAN

When Mawlana Hazar Imam arrived at the didargah in Aliabad, the Jamat’s emotion and excitement reached its peak. Tears started rolling down our faces without control as his helicopter landed. We were tens of thousands in this huge landscape surrounded by mountains. Our wish was for a glimpse of our beloved Imam. More tears flowed as he showered that glimpse upon us with all his grace and mercy – we felt his Zahiri-u-Noorani Didar after 17 long years! This was happening at a historical time of his Imamat – 60 years! The Diamond Jubilee was an unbelievable occasion for us.

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, is received by Muhammad Zubair, Governor of Sindh and Syed Murad Ali Shah, Chief Minister of Sindh, and greeted by Junior Guides and Shaheen Scouts from the Sindh Jamat upon his arrival at Karachi airport during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Pakistan in December 2017. Photo: The Ismaili/Akbar Hakim
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, in discussion on how high-tech simulators can be used to teach students how to treat heart disease at Aga Khan University’s Centre for Innovation in Medical Education (CIME) cardiac catherization lab during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Pakistan in December 2017. Photo: The Ismaili/Akbar Hakim.

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2018

January 2018: Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Diamond Jubilee Visit

Aga Khan UAE Diamond Jubilee
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan meets with His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan (left column) and His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan during his Diamond Jubilee visit to the United Arab Emirate in January 2018.
A view of the beautiful stage for the Diamond Jubilee Darbar held in Dubai for the Emirates Jamat. On the centre, behind the chair, is the circular Diamond Jubilee logo bearing the crest of the Ismaili Imamat.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan addresses the Jamat during the Diamond Jubilee Darbar held at the Dubai World Central in January 2018. Photo: The Ismaili/Akbar Hakim
A lineup of Aga Khan Scouts and Guides bid farewell to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, upon his departure from the Diamond Jubilee Darbar in Dubai in January 2018. Photo: The Ismaili/Akbar Hakim.

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February 20 – March 1, 2018: India, Diamond Jubilee Visit

(Inset) Members of the Ismaili community in Jogeshwari, Maharashtra, crowd around the huge 150kg Diamond Jubilee Cake that was served to the local Jamat during Mawlana Hazar Imam His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee visit to India, February 20 – March 1, 2018.

It is with the future in mind that we now dedicate the Sunder Nursery as one of the world’s great public parks – open to all for recreation, for contemplation, for education, and for inspiration. Just think of what a lively, energetic place this will be in the days and years to come. Already, we are told, a vast array of birds and butterflies have made their new homes in these restored spaces. And soon they will be joined by school children coming here to experience a variety of new micro-habitats, by scientists advancing their ecological research, by artists meeting audiences in the beautiful Garden amphitheatre, by historians and other visitors engaging with dozens of preserved historical monuments. — His Highness the Aga Khan, excerpt from speech made at the opening ceremony of Sunder Nursery, February 21, 2018.

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, and India’s Vice President Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu at the opening ceremony of the Sunder Nursery during Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Diamond Jubilee visit to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018. Photo: VP’s Twitter page.
Aga Khan portrait at Sunder Nursery Diamond Jubilee visit Barakah
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, poses for a photograph at the newly inaugurated Sunder Nursery in New Delhi during his Diamond Jubilee visit to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018.
Dr Shailendra Kumar Joshi, Chief Secretary, Government of Telangana, welcomes Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan with a beautiful bouquet of flowers during his Diamond Jubilee visit to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018. Photo: AKDN/Jalaluddin Bhanvadiya.
Decorations at a Mumbai Jamatkhana during the Diamond Jubilee visit of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, enters the Darbar hall in Mumbai during his Diamond Jubilee visit to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018. Photo: The.Ismaili/Nazim Lokhandwala.
Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee visit India 2018, Barakah
After exiting the Darbar hall, Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, stops to observe artwork created by young students for the occasion of his Diamond Jubilee visit to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018. Photo: The Ismaili.
Scene from celebrations in Hyderabad during Mawlana Hazar Imam His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee visit to India from February 20 – March 1, 2018. Photo: Pink n Purple Photography.

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March 8, 2018: Windsor Castle, UK. Her Majesty the Queen Hosts Mawlana Hazar Imam for His Diamond Jubilee

Her Majesty the Queen hosts a dinner on March 8, 2018 at Windsor Castle to mark the Diamond Jubilee of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan. Photo: AKDN/Gary Otte
His Highness the Aga Khan introduces Her Majesty the Queen to members of his family including Prince Rahim, Princess Salwa, Prince Hussain and Prince Aly Muhammad. Barakah
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, introduces members of his family (from right) Prince Aly Muhammad, Prince Hussain, Princess Salwa and Prince Rahim, to Her Majesty the Queen when she hosted him for a dinner at Windsor Castle on March 8, 2018, in celebration of his Diamond Jubilee. Phooto: AKDN / Gary Otte.

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March 13-20, 2018: Atlanta, Georgia, and Houston, Texas, USA Diamond Jubilee Visit

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, receives a state welcome in Atlanta, Georgia to commence his Diamond Jubilee visit to the USA on March 13, 2018. Ismaili leaders from many parts of the country are seen gathered at far left to welcome their 49th Imam. Photo: Zain Hansraj/The Ismaili.

Please click on image to read proclamation

Aga Khan proclamation State of Georgia Diamond Jubilee Barakah Malik Merchant
Georgia Governor Nathan Deal presents Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, with a Proclamation in recognition of his Diamond Jubilee during his visit to the USA in March 2018. Click on image to read PDF proclamation
Upon his arrival to celebrate his Diamond Jubilee visit to Texas in March 2018, Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan is given a sabre salute by the Texas A&M Ross Volunteers, the State of Texas’ official honor guard.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, meets with Mayor of Houston Sylvester
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, meets with Mayor of Houston Sylvester Turner at the luncheon hosted by the Governor of Texas Greg Abbott during his Diamond Jubilee visit to the USA in March 2018, as Dr. Barkat Fazal, President of the Council for the United States, looks on.

Welcoming the Aga Khan to Texas

The ethics of compassion and care, tolerance and equality, selflessness and service center His Highness’ deeply held belief in and practice of the Muslim faith. Particularly in recent years, the Aga Khan has pledged his voice to articulate the values of peace, generosity and brotherhood that unquestionably compose the core of Islam. He often says his obligations to his community and to humankind are inseparable. This has driven the Aga Khan to call on us to celebrate our differences of religion, culture, language and ethnicity as evidence of humanity’s great beauty. Our inherent diversity, he says, should propel humankind to embrace pluralism….When I visited the Aga Khan Academy in Nairobi, Kenya in 2015, I was emotionally struck by the undeniable love of humankind evident in the AKDN’s work to help those children reach their full potential. It became clear to me that the driving force behind each of the Aga Khan’s endeavors is his desire to foster progress and peace through hope. For hope, he says, is the most powerful source of human motivation… Mr. Speaker, His Highness the Aga Khan – through his work, rooted in the Muslim faith – is a testament to Islam being a religion of both the intellect and humility, of both tradition and progress. The celebration of the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee is a monumental occasion for Ismaili Muslims across the world. I wish to congratulate the American Ismaili Muslim community and convey to His Highness the Aga Khan that he and the values of tolerance, diversity and pluralism that Ismaili Muslims uphold will always be welcome in the United States of America. — Excerpt from Congressional Remarks made by Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson of Texas in the US House of Representatives

One Jamat Mosaic
The One Jamat Mosaic — comprising thousands of individual photos into a single, cohesive work of art — was presented to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, on the morning of Navroz, 21 March 2018, to commemorate his Diamond Jubilee.
An image of 49 of the 147 Fatimid glass weights that were presented to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, during his Diamond Jubilee visit to the USA in March 2018.
Fatimid Glass weight Aga Khan gift
The glass weights weigh from less than 0.02 of an ounce to over 0.33 ounces, in sizes ranging from those of a US nickel to a quarter.  Titled, “Diverse are their hues,” from a verse in the Holy Qur’an describing the diversity of Allah’s creation, the catalogue accompanying the weights lists each one of the weights and their inscriptions, which reflect the political and religious authority of the Fatimid Imam-Caliphs. For example the glass weight shown in this image contains an outer marginal inscription that reads al-Imam al-‘Aziz bi’llah amir al-mu’minin (Imam al-‘Aziz bi’llah the Commander of the Faithful), and the inner circle contains the word ‘adl (justice).

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March 21, 2018: 10 Downing Street, A Message to the Ismailis from British Prime Minister Theresa May

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March 21, 2018: LIF Announcement, Portugal Darbar

LIF (Ismaili Leaders International Forum) announced on Navroz, March 21, 2018 that, with Mawlana Hazar Imam’s approval, the Jamats around the world would be welcome to join the Diamond Jubilee Darbar in Lisbon. Some weeks earlier, Nazim Ahmed, the AKDN representative to Portugal and one of the 5 senior officials of the Ismaili Imamat to Portugal, made a statement to Portugal’s Ministry of External Affairs that the celebrations in Lisbon would be the highest point of the celebrations of His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee. 

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April 2018: Nairobi, Kenya, Diamond Jubilee Visit

Upon arriving in Nairobi, Kenya, on Thursday April 12, 2018, to celebrate his Diamond Jubilee Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, is presented with a bouquet of flowers by a young member of the Ismaili Volunteer Corps. Photo: The Ismaili/Hussein Jiva, via Facebook.
His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta welcomes Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan to the State House in Nairobi during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Kenya in April 2018.
Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee Darbar Kenya
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, walks through the Jamat amid the recitations of the Salwat during the Diamond Jubilee Darbar in Nairobi in April 2018. Photo: The Ismaili/Zafrani Mansurali
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, addresses the Jamat during the Diamond Jubilee Darbar in Nairobi in April 2018. Photo: The Ismaili/Aziz Islamshah.

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May 2018: Diamond Jubilee Visit Canada

Aga Khan Rideau Hall Diamond Jubilee Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, Barkah
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, his daughter Princess Zahra and Ismaili Leaders Malik Talib and Shafik Sachedina arrive at Rideau Hall for a dinner hosted by Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, to mark Hazar Imam’s Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada in May 2018.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, and Her Excellency Julie Payette with former Governors General Adrienne Clarkson and David Johnston, and current and former Prime Ministers Justin Trudeau, Joe Clark, and Jean Chretien, and their respective spouses at Rideau Hall during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada in May 2018.
Aga Khan and Premier Horgan Diamond Jubilee Barakah
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, and British Columbia Premier John Horgan speak about the Ismaili community’s spirit of service and pluralism during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada in May 2018.
Aga Khan waves farewell from his plane, Barakah
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, waves farewell before departing Vancouver following his Diamond Jubilee visit in May 2018.
Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell and Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi greet Mawlana Hazar Imam Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee
Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell and Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi greet Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, upon his arrival in Calgary during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada in May 2018.
Mawlana Hazar, His Highness the Aga Khan, and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley Diamond Jubilee Barakah
Mawlana Hazar, His Highness the Aga Khan, and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley pose for a photograph with members of the Imamat and Premier’s delegation during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada in May 2018.

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June 23, 2018: Paris, Diamond Jubilee Visit France

Mawlana Hazar Imam is received at the Darbar hall by Mukhi Saheb, Mukhiani Saheba, Kamadia Saheb, and Kamadiani Saheba of Paris Principle Jamatkhana during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Paris on June 23, 2018. Photo: The.Ismaili/Zahur Ramji
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, admires artwork of the France jurisdiction Jamat during his Diamond Jubilee visit to France on June 23, 2018.; murids young and old conveyed messages of love, affection, and gratitude to Mawlana Hazar Imam on the occasion of his Diamond Jubilee. Photo: The Ismaili/Zahur Ramji
Youth volunteers line up to bid farewell to Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, upon his departure from the Diamond Jubilee Darbar held in Paris on June 23, 2018.. Photo: The.Ismaili/Zahur Ramji

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June 2018: Diamond Jubilee Visit UK

British Prime Minister Theresa May hosts Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan on June 27, 2018 at 10 Downing Street, during his Diamond Jubilee visit to the UK. Photo: UK Prime Minister, 10 Downing Street.

The value of education, of course, is at the heart of this project [Aga Khan Centre].  We are proud to open here a new home for two important educational institutions associated with the Aga Khan Development Network and the Ismaili Imamat.  One is the Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations of the Aga Khan University. The other is the Institute of Ismaili Studies. The UK offices of the Aga Khan Foundation will also be located here…. These institutions — through their teaching and research, their rich library and archival resources, as well as their tours and public programmes – will enrich the lives of people from the entire world….When I came to my role as Imam of the Shia Ismaili Muslim community — just sixty years ago — I found it impossible to accept the notion of inevitably clashing civilisations. My own early life experiences were in both worlds  — and so were those of millions of Muslim peoples. So rather than talk about clashing civilisations, I began to talk — again and again, as some of you may recall — about a clash of ignorances. And the assumption behind that phrase was that ignorance could yield to understanding through the power of education. That continuing conviction is what brings me here today. I believe that is what brings all of us here. My strong expectation is that, from this new home, our education-oriented institutions will contribute powerfully to building new bridges of understanding across the gulfs of ignorance. — His Highness the Aga Khan, June 26, 2018, London

His Royal Highness Prince Charles and Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, discuss the features of the Garden of Life of the Aga Khan Centre with garden designer Madison Cox shortly after the inauguration of the new building on June 26, 2018. Photo: AKDN/Nayyir Damani.

It is, of course, Your Highness, the remarkable leadership that you have shown over these past sixty years, which has made a reality of everything we see here today. Above all, it is Your Highness’s vision which has enabled the Aga Khan Development Network to grow into an organization of international importance, addressing development needs across the globe, and bridging the boundaries of race and religion with your message of hope, compassion and pluralism…. It is clear to me that in holding dear the values of humility, honour, magnanimity and hospitality, the Ismaili Community takes its inspiration from you, Your Highness, and from your extraordinary “Greatness of Soul.” In similarly inspiring this Centre, you have set it on a path to serve the world with great distinction, just as Your Highness has yourself done throughout your remarkable life. My wife and I have been fortunate enough to see just what an inspiration you are to your community when we accompanied you to Altit years ago…. His Royal Highness Prince Charles

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A Humble Supplication

We make the following supplication from a Ginan composed by the Ismaili missionary Pir Hasan Kabirdin (14th century).

Transliteration

Eji, Aash Karine Ya Ali hun tere dar ubhi,
Kar jodine em mangu Ya Shah;
Dejo didar tusi mahavar datar Shah,
Hama tere charane lagu. [2]

Translation

With hope O Ali I stand at Thy door,
With palms joined I sincerely beg of Thee;
Bless me with Thy Holy Didar, O Great Lord and Benefactor!
At Thy Feet I fall to prostrate.

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Please visit the following links reflecting the First Six Decades of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Imamat:

The Ismaili: The First Decade: 1957-1967
The Ismaili: The Second Decade: 1967-1977
The Ismaili: The Third Decade: 1977-1987
The Ismaili: The Fourth Decade: 1987-1997
The Ismaili: The Fifth Decade: 1997-2007
The Ismaili: The Sixth Decade: 2007-2017

The remaining parts of this special series on the first 4 years of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Seventh Decade of Imamat will be published in the coming days. Please visit Barakah regularly.

Date posted: July 8, 2021.

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Before departing this website please take a moment to visit Barakah’s Table of Contents or the Home Page for links to more than 250 pieces dedicated to Mawlana Hazar Imam, members of his family and the Ismaili Imamat.

7 comments

  1. Wow!!!! Tears in my EYES!!! Powerful PICTURES…SO PROUD OF OUR PRECIOUS IMAM! Such a Universally RECOGNIZED HUMANITARIAN…How hard he WORKS…

    Like

  2. Beautiful photos and wonderful article Malik. Happy Imamat Day to you and may Mawla bless you with good health and happiness to carry on always such good work. My good wishes and prayers are always with you ameen.

    Like

  3. Very well designed and the pictures took back memories of diamond jubilee. Mashallah looking forward to seeing your project in near future . May Allah bless you and give barakah ten folds of your time and knowledge dedication. Aameen. Imamat day Mubarak.

    Like

  4. Ya Ali Madad Shukher Allahamdollilah
    I enjoyed all the articles, photographs, and the way it’s presented it’s wonderful. Mowla bless you and have a beautiful and blessed Imamat day Mubarak Ameen Ameen

    Like

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