Last spring, Barakah began celebrating the birthdays of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s family members by publishing photos and narratives reflecting their hard work, passion and commitment to making this world a better place to live, and their incredible dedication to the work of the Imamat. We commenced our tribute with Prince Hussain (b. April 10, 1974) as he celebrated his 47th birthday, and followed that with pieces on Prince Amyn (b. September 12, 1937) Princess Zahra (b. September 18, 1970), Prince Rahim (b. October 12, 1971) and most recently Princess Yasmin (b. December 28, 1949).
We had an excellent response from our readers everywhere. Now, in this post, we feature Prince Aly Muhammad, Mawlana Hazar Imam’s youngest son, as he celebrates his 22nd birthday on March 7, 2022. This is exactly fourteen days before March 21, 2022 when hundreds of millions of people around the world celebrate the auspicious and joyous occasion of Navroz, the Persian New Year.
In between the birthday pieces, we published a beautiful post of paintings of Mawlana Hazar Imam, Princess Zahra, Prince Rahim and Prince Hussain by celebrated Ismaili artist Aziz Khanbhai of Vancouver, Canada. His renditions were based on photographs in his collection.
Aziz Khanbhai has just completed a beautiful painting of Prince Aly Muhammad, and has released it for publication for this special Barakah post dedicated to the Prince on his auspicious 22nd birthday. We are grateful to him for sharing the painting with readers of Barakah.
Through this special post, we convey our heartfelt birthday greetings to Prince Aly Muhammad and wish him success and happiness in all his endeavours.
March 7, 2000: Birth of Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan
April 2015: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan Visits the Aga Khan Academy in Hyderabad, and Heritage Sites
Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, visited the Aga Khan Academy in Hyderabad on April 10, 2015 on a working visit to review progress of the school. Mawlana Hazar Imam was accompanied by his son Prince Aly Muhammad, his daughter Princess Zahra and her children Sara and Iliyan. The visit allowed Mawlana Hazar Imam to assess first-hand the progress made since his last visit in September 2013 when the school was formally inaugurated. While at the Academy, Mawlana Hazar Imam toured the campus including the Athletics Centre, the Junior and Senior Schools, as well as the student residences. Together with members of his family, he met and interacted with teachers, staff and students.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, accompanied by member of his family, also toured the Qutb Shahi Heritage Park park, reviewing photographs, restoration plans and the progress of work to date. They also toured Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi.
July 2017: Inauguration of the Diamond Jubilee of Mawlana Hazar Imam
October 2017: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan Visits Pakistan
Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan arrived in Pakistan on October 9, 2017 to visit projects of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) in the north of the country. The trip enhanced his understanding of issues related to the built environment, natural hazard mitigation, health, education, culture, and rural development — all areas in which the AKDN with its partners are actively engaged to improve the quality of life. During his weeklong visit, Prince Aly Muhammad met with numerous families whose quality of life has been enhanced by the Network. From this trip, the Prince then wrote, directed and narrated a documentary Close to Home which was screened at the International Film Festival at Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations in Lisbon July 2018.
March 2018: Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II Hosts His Highness the Aga Khan at Windsor Castle
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on March 7, 2018 hosted a dinner at Windsor Castle to mark the Diamond Jubilee of Mawlana Hazar Imam.
Mawlana Hazar Imam was accompanied by Prince Amyn, Princess Zahra, Prince Rahim, Princess Salwa, Prince Hussain and Prince Aly Muhammad.
The event acknowledged historic linkages between the Ismaili Imamat and the British Monarchy; and longstanding connections between the Ismaili Community, the institutions of the Aga Khan Development Network, and the United Kingdom. Mawlana Hazar Imam was bestowed the title ‘His Highness’ by Her Majesty the Queen in 1957 upon his accession as the 49th Imam of the Ismaili Muslims.
June 2018: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan at World Partnership Walk Toronto
On June 17, 2018, Prince Aly Muhammad gave an opening speech at Pecaut Square, Toronto for the 34th annual, World Partnership Walk, organized by the Aga Khan Foundation, which raised over Can$ 6 million. Prince Aly Muhammad’s presence energized the crowd of walkers and volunteers. The walkers were delighted to see him walking the route, engaging in conversation along the way and acknowledging the contribution of all those in attendance to improve the lives in marginalized communities around the world. Prince Aly Muhammad spoke eloquently about the work of the Aga Khan Development Network, and his trip to Pakistan that had taken place in October 2017, after which he produced a documentary Close to Home on the impact of climate change on the region’s vulnerable communities.
July 2018: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan at the Diamond Jubilee Celebration in Lisbon
November 2018: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan Visits the Naryn Campus of the University of Central Asia
Prince Aly Muhammad made a five day visit to the Kyrgyz Republic, during which he visited the Naryn campus of the University of Central Asia (UCA). Prince Aly Muhammad spent time with students in Naryn to understand more about their backgrounds and aspirations. “I was deeply inspired by the students and faculty I had the opportunity to meet during this trip. Getting to know so many talented students and learning more about the UCA’s mission has been exciting and deeply rewarding,” explained Prince Aly.
As part of his ongoing work, Prince Aly Muhammad also plans to build on his first film, Close to Home. “I was touched by the enthusiastic response to my first project, including at the World Partnership Walk in Toronto and the Jubilee Arts International Film Festival in Lisbon,” he said. “I plan to continue adding to the Close to Home series, in the hope that these films will help shed light on issues that I believe are important to young people today.”
June 2019: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan Visits Tajikistan
The website Asiaplus reported that on June 25, 2019 Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan arrived in Khorog, the capital of Tajikistan’s Gorno Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO) for his first ever visit to Tajikistan. During his visit, Prince Aly Muhammad visited the Khorog Campus of the University of Central Asia (UCA).
2020: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan Releases Film Al-Khimyah
In 2020, Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan released the feature length documentary “Al-Khimyah” (see review) which explores the work of the Aga Khan Historic Cities Programme in Cairo. This is part of the Prince’s Close to Home Series and shines a spotlight on the 30-hectare Al-Azhar Park — converted from a mound of rubble — and the stories of local residents of the adjacent al-Darb al-Ahmar neighbourhood.
May 2021: Prince Aly Muhammad Aga Khan Attends Virtual Global Convocation of the Aga Khan University
Date posted: March 5, 2022.
Last updated: March 6, 2022 (typos).
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Malik Merchant is the founding publisher and editor of Barakah (2017) as well as its two sister websites Simerg (2009) and Simergphotos (2012). An IT consultant for more than 30 years, he now engages in family related projects. His passion for literature and community publications began in his childhood years through the work of his late parents Jehangir (d. 2017) and Malek Merchant (d. 2021), who devoted their lives to the service of the Ismaili community, its institutions and the Imam-of-the-Time. In the UK, Malik edited Ilm magazine with his father. The internet encouraged him to launch his first website, Simerg, in 2009. A resident of Ontario for almost 4 decades, he recently relocated to Alberta. He has an animal loving daughter Dr. Nurin Merchant; she is a vet and practices in Ontario.
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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. Also visit Barakah’s two sister websites, Simerg and Simergphotos.