Jenabai Ahmed Hasham Kheraj
- British India
Born in 1896 Bharapur
My grandmother Jenabai Ahmed Hasham Kheraj (nee Fazal Premji Murji) was 2 second of the 7 daughters born in 1896, in Bharapar, Cutch, India. A small village about 15 km south of Bhuj. There was no male child in the family, so the parents made a “mannat” (vow) of Pir Agakhan (lll) for a son. Lo and behold in 1906 the 8th born was a boy. They did not name him and affectionately as “gaabho” (lamb) and did not cut his “janda” (locks of hair) until…..
1907 Agakhan III (age 30) came to Bhuj and the whole family of Fazal Premji Murji went to Bhuj for the "deedar". They travelled in a “Gaddo”(a bullock cart). My grandmother remembers “Gaabho” would not stop crying all the way to Bhuj. They made a makeshift hammock out of a “pachedi” (head cover) to no avail. After hours (? 4-5 hours as bullock carts average speed is 5 km./hr.) arrived at the “deedar” site. It was like a “mero”(fair) there were hundreds of people, lined up to get a glimpse of the Pir.
As they stood in line, Gabho continued crying. Suddenly, they were in front of the Aga and Gabho stopped crying. The Pir was sitting on a “tukht”(throne like chair) and they bowed and placed few Koris at his feet as “pagelagani”(offering). (The Kori was the currency of Kutch State until 1948). Gabho was raised toward the Aga and he threw a “chando” (sprinkled water) on “Gabho” and said in Urdu “Iska naam Abdullah”. “Gabho” had locks shorn and he grew up to be Abdullah Fazal Premji Murji.
He moved to Tanzania 1920. In time he prospered and came to be known as “King” of Bukoba, a town on shores of Lake Victoria. He was affectionately called Abhu. Mama to my father and Abhumama to us. He was a shrewd businessman but generous at heart. He donated to community of Bukoba and helped many members of family to settle in Bukoba. He called my father from Bhuj when his parents could not mange him. My father worked under him from 1938 through 1944. Abhumama had a large family of 13 children who are dispersed through the world. He passed way in Bukoba in 1986 at the age of 80.
May his soul rest in peace.''
Ansar H Ahmed MD MRCP (UK)
3770 Yellowstone Ln. N
MN (Minnesota) 55446 USA