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Ismaili Muslims Celebrate Diamond Jubilee by Hassan Raza - Published Jul 11, 2017


by Hassan Raza - Jul 11, 2017

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Today Ismaili Muslims around the world are celebrating the "Diamond Jubilee." It has been 60 years since their spiritual leader, Prince Shah Karim Al Hussaini, commonly known as Prince Karim Aga Khan succeeded his grandfather, Sir Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan and inherited the leadership of his community by becoming the Imam of the Time or as Ismaili Muslims say, "Hazar Imam" which means "Present Imam"

Aga Khan IV is the current and 49th Imam of Ismaili Muslims. Though a British passport holder, he shares deep attachment with Pakistan because he happens to be the grandson of the Karachi-born Sir Sultan Muhammed Shah or Aga Khan III (1877-1957), who was one of the founders and the first President of the All-India Muslim League in 1906. It was Sir Sultan Muhammed Shah who had called on the British Empire to consider Muslims to be a separate nation within India.

Prince Karim Aga Khan’s father Prince Ali Salman Aga Khan (1911-1960) had served as Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations, where he had also gone on to become the Vice President of the General Assembly and Chairman of the UN Peace Observation Committee.

Ismaili community of Pakistan is known for their notable contributions to the country. When Oman had agreed to sell Gwadar to Pakistan for Rs 5.5 billion in December 1958, donations were raised and the biggest contribution had come from Prince Ali Salman Aga Khan, the father of Prince Karim Aga Khan, the current spiritual leader of Ismailis. Aga Khan’s philanthropic institutions spend about US$600 million per year - mainly in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. In Pakistan, the Aga Khan Foundation has till date established a number of welfare projects to provide sustainable solutions to long-term problems of poverty, hunger, illiteracy and ill health etc, besides focusing on goals like community participation, gender, pluralism and human resource development.

Some of the notable members from this community include Samina Baig, the first Muslim women Climber to summit Mount Everest, Uloomi Kareem Shaheen (MMA Fighter). Nazir Sabir, Lalik Jan Shaheed who was awarded Nisha e Haider in 1999 Kargil war, Ismail Guljee the famous Artist, Famous pop singer Shahzad Roy and Diana Baig, Pakistani women's cricketer and footballer.

On behalf of Dil Say Pakistan ,we want to wish a very happy Imamat Day Mubarak to all Ismaili friends around the globe. Hope you have a great time with your loved ones on this blessed day.