Rare Photographs of Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah and Prince Aly Khan from the Collection of Naffisa Gilani

By NAFFISA GILANI

I am originally from Arusha and the daughter of late Gulshan and Kamrudin Mohamed Jivan. I was looking through my papa’s albums, and came across some very special tiny black and white photographs of Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth. I vaguely remember the late Arusha Jamatkhana and the library in the photos; I was very young then. I am happy to share the photos with readers of this blog. I would urge readers to scan through their family albums like I and many others have done (read Collections), and I am confident you will come across historical photographs of Mawlana Hazar Imam and members of his family that you might like to share with the Jamat around the world through Barakah, a website dedicated to Mawlana Hazar Imam and members of his family.

There are a number of individuals from my father’s family who appear in the photos including my uncles Hassanali Mohamed Jivan, Kassamali Mohamed Jivan and Jamal Mohamed Jivan. I have tried my best to identify other individuals as best as I could, and I request readers to submit names of persons and specific places that I have not mentioned by completing the feedback form at the end of the article or to write to the editor Malik Merchant at Simerg@aol.com. Also, the exact location and date of Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah’s two photos are not known, and any information about the photos would be greatly appreciated. Each photo has been designated a unique id#.

Two Rare Photos of Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan

Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan III, in an East African coastal city, Barakah.com
Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan III, visiting the Jamat in a coastal town in East Africa, judging by the palm trees. Date and exact location not known. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG001.
Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan III, Barakah
Mawlana Sultan Mahomed Shah, His Highness the Aga Khan III, with the late Diwan Sir Eboo Pirbhai walking alongside him at right. Exact location and date not known; location may be Arusha Jamatkhana based on photo ids NG010/11, see last two photos below. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG002.

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Prince Aly Khan in Arusha in 1951

Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG003.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Note the Ismaili Flag on the plane’s wing, top right. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG004.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG005.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG006.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), with the late Diwan Sir Eboo Pirbhai following behind. At right in white uniform is Ebrahim Mohamed Jivan. Circa 1951. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG007.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Sitting at the table on the left of Prince Aly Khan is my dad’s brother Jamal Mohamed Jivan. Standing on the far left in the volunteer’s uniform is Badrudin Lallani, my dad’s friend. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG008.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Standing behind Prince Aly Khan on the left in the volunteer’s cap is Badrudin Lallani, and standing on the right in the white hat and uniform is my uncle Ebrahim Mohamed Jivan. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG009.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah.com
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth (seated on stage) visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). The late Diwan Sir Eboo Pirbhai is seen sitting on the stage at left holding papers, as the Prince approaches the stage. Circa 1951. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG010.
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika), Barakah
Prince Aly Khan and Ms. Rita Hayworth visit Arusha, Tanzania (then Tanganyika). Circa 1951. Photo: Naffisa Gilani Collection. Photo id# NG011.

Date posted: October 23, 2021.
Last updated: October 25, 2021 (caption updates).

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About the contributor: Naffisa Gilani was born in Arusha, and lived in Mombasa, Vancouver and Calgary before retiring in Nanaimo, BC. 

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Barakah welcomes your feedback. Please complete the LEAVE A REPLY form below or send your comment to simerg@aol.com. Your letter may be edited for length and brevity, and is subject to moderation. Before departing this website please take a moment to visit Barakah’s Table of Contents for links to more than 275 pieces dedicated to Mawlana Hazar Imam, members of his family and the Ismaili Imamat.

6 comments

  1. My father also had photos from this time in Dar es Salaam. I remember him showing me his treasured albums which I no longer have. From memory, the first picture looks like Dar es Salaam – we had a plot not far from there – the Jamatkhana was also built near there. Our plot was across road from the Jamatkhana. The Aga Khan Boys school was also just nearby as was the Girls hostel.

    Mohammedali Fidaali Ebrahim

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  2. Dear Malik,

    My father mentioned that the photograph with Imam Sultan Mahomed Shah walking under an umbrella was in Dar es Salaam at the time of Diamond Jubilee. Hope that is correct, but he seemed quite sure because of the tents at the back which is where many people slept. He also mentioned that the man standing at the mike was Ibrahim Nathoo. Thanks so much for posting these photos in Barakah – a wonderful contribution by Naffisa Gilani!

    With best wishes Nadia

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  3. It’s nice to see such historic pictures. My father used to be a volunteer and a photographer. I have seen black & white pictures of the Noorani family during the funeral of Imam Sultan Mohammed Shah in my father’s collection.

    I will scan them when I am visiting my mother and share them here.

    Like

  4. Very glad to see the rare pictures of Namdar Prince Aly Khan. I am glad to inform you that Prince Aly Khan blessed me at Karachi, Pakistan, in the year 1955 at my wedding ceremony. I had pictures with him.

    Like

  5. Person with Prince Aly Khan in most pictures is my father Noormohamed Natha Hirji. At the time my father and Kamrudin Jessa were Mukhi and Kamadia of Arusha Jamatkhana (1950s).

    Like

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