Chagla Vali Muhammad's forefathers were originally from Mulla Katiar, Sind. They migrated to Lasbela and finally settled in Karachi. Amongst them, Vali Muhammad, known as Vali Bhagat came to live in Kharadhar, Karachi. He was a religious teacher, and a ginans reciter in Jamatkhana. The Imam paid a gracious visit to Karachi for 27 days on April 10, 1920. On that occasion, a large concourse of ten thousand Ismailis flocked in the city. The Council formed a Managing Committee to control its administration. Vali Muhammad extended his incredible services as a member, presided by Wazir Col.
Bhagat Walji Velji was one of the most dedicated persons in Mekhandi, Porebandar, having four sons, Nanji, Premji, Jivraj, and Ali. The elder son, Nanji, had a son Hussain and a daughter Jetbai with his first wife. He had three daughters, Manbai, Nurbai and Hirbai and a son Alibhai with his second wife.
Alibhai, the son of Nanji was born in Mekhandi on Sunday, June 10, 1893. His father Nanji Walji owned a small fertile land at the end of the village. He was a devoted person and very knowledgeable of ginans; therefore, his son Alibhai acquired his formal religious education at home.
Alibhai Premji Tyrewala was born in Bombay in 1898. Nothing is known of his early life. He started a small shop of second-hand tires on Grant Road, Bombay. He gradually erected two big stores of tires and old cars.
His career in jamati services began when he became a lifetime member of the Ismailia Students Library, Kandi Mola, Bombay in 1923 till his death. He was also the Treasurer of the Central Panjibhai Club, Bombay.
Ali Muhammad Alidina, the son of Mukhi Alidina Asani (1793-1881) was an eminent contractor in Karachi. In addition, his brothers and himself managed a business of hides and skins. They extended their mercantile activity as far as Burma. Ali Muhammad was an influential person, sharing a close friendship with the British officers in Karachi. He was also in good terms with Muhammad Rawjee (1830-1897), Sir Karim Ibrahim (1840-1924), and some other eminent persons of the Persian Gulf.
Kanji Ramji originated from Samaghoga, about 14 miles from Mundra, Kutchh. He had a religious proclivity since childhood. His habits were very simple and he lived a saintly life till last breath, so much so that the Imam during his first visit to East Africa said, 'What should be the momin's qualities, habits and manners are seen in Kanji Ramji. Everyone must follow them accordingly.' (Zanzibar: July 5, 1899). He was also the Mukhi and became known as the 'Dini Darwish of Kutchh' due to his pious life.
He was born in Kera, Kutchh in 1851 and came to Zanzibar by a sailing vessel in 1863 at the age of 12 years. He proceeded to Bagamoyo to work as an assistant to Sewa Haji Paroo (1851-1897). After having earned enough money, he began to organize caravans for domestic travelling. His business expanded, at first slowly but later more quickly. He had extended his operations all along the caravan route, opening branches of operations of his firm in Dar-es-Salaam, Sadani, Tabora, Ujiji and of Kalima and Tindo in the Belgium Congo.
Alibhai Lalji is reported to have migrated from Junagadh, India to Mombasa, Kenya in 1880 to explore business opportunities. His son Hussain also came from India in 1912, and settled however in Mwanza. Later on, his son Hasan Ali and the rest of the family joined Hussain in 1920 in Mwanza. They jointly ran a general store, called Alibhai Lalji & Sons, and made steady progress.
Hasan Ali liked modernity in dressing and eating. He was meticulously dressed and was easily distinguished in a crowd of Asians. Due to his modern tastes, he was nick named as Hasan Ali Fancy.
Amir Ali Muhammad Ormadawala was born in 1917 in the house of Mohammad Hirji of Amerali. His father died in 1918 when he was hardly a year old. His mother, Sambai had a religious proclivity and rendered her services as the Mukhiani of the Ormada jamat.
Vali, the son of Rehmu Bhagat was a devoted person in Bhuj, Kutchh. He left Kutchh for Sind, and ultimately settled in Karachi. Soon after the retirement of Mukhi Alidina Asani (1793-1881) from the post of the Estate Agent in 1873, Imam Hasan Ali Shah appointed him the second Estate Agent for Karachi and Sind. The Imam also bestowed upon him the title of Varas. His descendant became known as the Valliani family in Karachi and Sind. Varas Vali rendered his services with devotion and died in 1878. The third Estate Agent after him was Varas Basaria, who died in 1918.
He was born in Bagamoyo, Uganda. He was a trader and became known as the 'uncrowned king' in Uganda until 1922. The High School of Mombasa stands out as one of the shining examples of his many large-hearted charities. According to the report of the Times of India (June 8, 1919), the British bestowed him the title of M.B.E. (Member of British Empire) in appreciation of his invaluable services and loyalty to the British government.His appearance in the arena of community services began with the establishment of the Ismaili Council on November 5, 1905 when he was appointed as one of its member.
Hashim Gangji was a native of Bhuj, Kutchh but migrated to East Africa in 1871. His son Abdullah was however born in Zanzibar in 1906, where he did his early schooling and subsequently went into business. He was an eminent clove merchant.
The genealogical tree of the renowned Lakha family draws back to their forefather named Surji. His son was Jairaj, and grandson was Manji. The son of Manji was Lalji, who had four sons, Punja, Virji, Lakha, and Kalyan. They lived in a village, called Berberaja, about 12 miles away from Jamnagar, Kutchh.Lakho, better known as Lakha, was a hawker and lost his house in a terrible famine. Reduced to extreme destitution, he wandered from village to village in search of livelihood. His son Kassim, who was born in 1853, had to toil and moil in Kutchh.
101 Ismaili Heroes - Volume 1 - Late 19th Century To Present Age
By Mumtaz Ali Tajddin Sadik Ali - firstname.lastname@example.org