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In passing of Yazdani’s Zend, Mumbai has lost a master baker

“Get rid of your cough, eat my ginger biscuit.” The baker who kneaded such happy prescriptions into Mumbai’s gut via the blackboard of the iconic Yazdani bakery in Fort is no more. Zend Meherwan Zend, the jovial co-owner of the six-decade-old Irani bakery who said bread must have a bite to it and who did not let Parkinson’s disease keep him from sipping tea or relishing ice-cream at the cash counter, passed away at age 86 this past Sunday. Article by Sharmila Ganesan Ram | TNN With the departu...
Tags: Life, Mumbai, Bombay, Alexander, Fort, Parkinson, Colaba, Zend, Irani, Food And Beverage, Deepak Rao, Mantralaya, Kurush Dalal, Yazdani, Zend Meherwan Zend, Kalyan Karmakar

Jeff Bezos just turned 57. Here's how he built Amazon into a $1.56 trillion company and became the world's richest person.

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos. David Ryder/Getty Images Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is turning 57 on Tuesday. Bezos launched Amazon in 1995. The company has since grown to one of the most valuable, powerful companies on the planet with a market value of $1.56 trillion.  Bezos has gone from a New York hedge-funder to the richest man in the world, but in the process, he's weathered a high-profile divorce and hacking scandal, faced antitrust scrutiny from lawmakers, and everything in between.  ...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Spacex, Elon Musk, New York, Texas, Microsoft, Congress, Washington Post, Washington, Life, Germany, India, New York City, US, America

How the Parsis Shaped Theatre in Colonial Bombay

Flops, frauds or community disapproval did not prove obstacles to the growth of the theatre enterprise. Elphinstone Circle in Bombay in the 1870s. Photo: Lee-Warner Collection/Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA When one thinks of Horniman Circle – the ring of elegant old buildings in south Mumbai – today, several associations spring to mind: the glossy storefronts of Starbucks and Hermes – the temples of neoliberal globalism; men snoozing on the garden’s shaded benches – a respite from...
Tags: Life, China, Wikipedia, India, Turkey, Iran, Starbucks, Victoria, Theater, Hermès, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Bombay, Madras, Town Hall

Mumbai: Parsis aggrieved as BMC plans to relocate Parsi Gate to facilitate coastal road project

Mumbai: Members of the Parsi community are aggrieved with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) as the fate of the iconic ‘Parsi Gate’ continues to remain uncertain. In order to facilitate the ongoing construction work for the Coastal Road Project (CRP), the civic body had approached the Bombay Parsi Punchayet (BPP), seeking its approval to relocate the 100-year-old structure. Article in Free Press Journal On Wednesday, a group of concerned citizens from the Parsi community went to t...
Tags: Life, US, Heritage, Mumbai, Donald Trump, EIA, Bmc, Bombay, MLA, CRP, NOC, Girgaum Chowpatty, Marine Drive, Parsi, Colaba, Chahal

The Legal Effect Of Declaring A Statute Unconstitutional; Revisiting The Pesikaka Case

What happens to a statute when the Supreme Court declares it unconstitutional, either in its entirety or in part? Does it vanish like a disappearing message on WhatsApp or does it get temporarily eclipsed due to a declaration by the Lords? The question was the subject matter of a detailed judgment delivered many moons ago by the Supreme Court in Behram Khurshid Pesikaka v. State of Bombay[1] (hereinafter referred to as “the Pesikaka case“) which is an authority on this point of law. The author t...
Tags: Supreme Court, Life, India, Court, US, United States, United Kingdom, Madison, Bombay, Norton, State, Legislature, Tony, Harvard Law Review, Supra, Willis

The pioneering lawyer who fought for women’s suffrage in India

Amid the pandemic gloom, it is easy to forget that the year 2020 marks an important anniversary for women’s rights. In the US, it has been 100 years since women cast their votes for the first time. A century ago in the United Kingdom, the first female law students were admitted to the Inns of Court. At Lincoln’s Inn in London, one of those students, Mithan Lam, was an Indian. In 1924, she became the first woman to be allowed to practise law in the Bombay High Court, shattering one of the thickes...
Tags: England, London, Supreme Court, Life, India, US, San Francisco, History, Bbc, Britain, United Kingdom, Lincoln, Kashmir, Lse, Bombay, Tata

Through the stained glass, vividly

Katayun Saklat , 82, is a charming and exuberant painter and stained glass artist Seated in the drawing room of her Auckland Square apartment, Katayun Saklat, painter and stained glass artist, though not necessarily in that order, speaks about her exceptional life and her art, as a number of her assistants come and go, pleasantly interrupting her for instructions. Saklat, 82, is a charming and exuberant personality and the room is a bit like her. But then it is also her gallery, Gallery Kata...
Tags: Art, UK, Life, Mumbai, New Delhi, Bombay, Buckinghamshire, Srinagar, Calcutta, Parsi, Zarathushtra, Katayun Saklat, Grant Lane, Katayun, Suhas Roy, Auckland Square

Kesavananda Bharati Case And Friendship Between Nani Palkhivala & HM Seervai

Remembering an episode form legendary jurist Nani Palkhivala’s life on his 18th death anniversary When Nani Palkhivala entered the Supreme Court to argue Kesavananda Bharti, India’s future rested on his shoulders. The case was to be heard by a mammoth bench of 13 judges, and their decision would decide the fate of the largest democracy in the world. Palkhivala knew that this was to be an uphill battle, especially because he was to go up against a celebrated jurist and his long-time friend from B...
Tags: Supreme Court, Life, India, History, Parliament, Mumbai, Bombay, Madras, Oxford University Press, Kerela, Bombay High Court, Kanga, DE, Nani Palkhivala, Palkhivala, Jamshedji Kanga

Dance pioneer Astad Deboo passes away in Mumbai

‘His works represent an important segment in contemporary dance expression in India,’ the Sangeet Natak Akademi had said. Dance pioneer Astad Deboo passed away in the early hours of Thursday, his family said in a brief announcement. He was 73. “He left us in the early hours of December 10, at his home in Mumbai, after a brief illness, bravely borne,” the announcement on social media said. “He leaves behind a formidable legacy of unforgettable performances combined with an unswerving dedicati...
Tags: Art, Japan, New York, London, Sweden, Indonesia, Mexico, Life, India, Iran, United States, Delhi, Mumbai, Pina Bausch, Kolkata, Bombay

Maneckji Seth Agiary – Parsi Imprint on Mumbai

Anyone who has lived in or grown up in Mumbai would know at least one Parsi for sure. And if new, you will wonder about the fuss around Bun-Maska (Bun-Butter), Bhurji-Pav (Scrambled eggs-Bread) and Irani Chai (Persian Tea). That is the extent to which the Parsis are part of the cosmopolitan weave of this city. The history of Bombay and the Parsis almost run parallel, with the community making their presence felt since the mid-17th century. Their contribution to the island’s early development, an...
Tags: Life, India, Unesco, Mumbai, Bombay, Fort, Parsi, Irani, Vikas Dilawari, Wadia, Wadia Clock Tower, Banaji Limji Agiary, Perin Nariman, Lamassu, Maneckji Seth Agiary, Bun Maska Bun Butter Bhurji Pav

Rusi Surti: Indian cricket’s original braveheart and ‘the poor man’s Garry Sobers’

Queenslanders saw one of their own in the first and only Indian Test player to play in the Sheffield Shield Patrick Skene Indian Test cricketer Rusi Surti plays a classic cover drive. ‘To see him perform in the middle was like sipping champagne and he gave endless pleasure to fans,’ says Kersi Meher-Homji. Photograph: Percy Surti Fifty-three years ago, the second Indian Test team to tour Australia arrived, turning the wheel of history and sowing the seeds of the respect Virat Kohli’s modern-da...
Tags: England, Australia, Life, India, Sports, Pakistan, Queensland, New Zealand, Brisbane, Muslim, PERCY, Melbourne, Mumbai, Western Australia, West Indies, Hindu

These landscapes from Jehangir Sabavala’s new solo reveal the luminous beauty of his art

A master of light and play, with a blend of Impressionist and Cubist elements, Jehangir Sabavala’s blue-chip art has inspired a sense of wonder and awe. Akara Art’s latest show revives the late artist’s legacy Article by Shaikh Ayaz | Architectural Digest India PUBLISHED: NOV 04, 2020 | 09:30:19 IST Jehangir Sabavala, The Miasmic Shore, Oil on Canvas 28 x 42 inches, 1967 Puneet Shah remembers only one brief encounter with the late Jehangir Sabavala who passed away in 2011 at 89, but he met t...
Tags: Art, Europe, France, Life, India, Paris, Italy, Mumbai, Kerala, Bombay, Rajasthan, Shah, Madhya Pradesh, Mark Rothko, Shirin, Parsi

Mithuben Hormusji Petit: Indian Freedom Fighter

MITHUBEN PETIT, WHO FOUGHT FOR INDIA’s FREEDOM WITH GANDHIJI, RENOUNCED HER COMFORTS AND LUXURIES Petit surname has its roots in the French word ‘petit’ (meaning physically small). One of the women pioneers of India’s freedom struggle, Mithuben’s ancestors had worked as a shipping clerk and interpreter for the British East India Company, French merchants who dealt with a lively, short Parsi clerk and they called him ‘le petit Parsi’. He was great grandfather of Mithuben’s father Sir Dinshaw Men...
Tags: Life, India, History, Mumbai, Bombay, Gujarat, Petit, Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi, Raj, Parsi, Padma Shri, East India company, Sardar Patel, Gandhiji, Kasturba

This Artwork Changed My Life: Pestonji Bomanji’s “Feeding the Parrot”

Elephant and Artsy have come together to present This Artwork Changed My Life, a creative collaboration that shares the stories of life-changing encounters with art. A new piece will be published every two weeks on both Elephant and Artsy. Together, our publications want to celebrate the personal and transformative power of art. Article by Rhea Dhanbhoora Pestonji Bomanji, Feeding the Parrot, 1882. Image via Wikimedia Commons The artists of the 19th century often came alive for me in my grandm...
Tags: Art, Life, India, Johannes Vermeer, Delhi, Mumbai, Van Gogh, Bombay, Monet, Renoir, Manet, Cezanne, Degas, Wikimedia Commons, Parsi, National Gallery of Modern Art

Fluid Jurisdictions and Solid Perpetuities: A Review By Leilah Vevaina

Editors’ Note: Continuing HistPhil‘s forum on waqfs, Leilah Vevaina reviews Nurfadzilah Yahaya’s Fluid Jurisdictions (2020), while discussing her own research on religious endowments in India and the Straits Settlements. Vevaina writes: “This axis of what colonial authorities recognized as public, and hence, as charitable giving, versus familial hence private giving, was the key evaluator of why endowments for ancestor worship ceremonies within the Straits settlements and Hong Kong were void, wh...
Tags: Hong Kong, Books, New York, London, Supreme Court, Life, Southeast Asia, India, Cambridge, Mumbai, British Empire, Bombay, South East, Chung, Straits, Strait

Sign The Petition: Save Parsi Gate at Marine Drive

A group of concerned citizens have started an online petition to save the Parsi Gate at Marine Drive in south Mumbai, which is likely to be relocated by the BMC for the upcoming coastal road. Article by Nauzer Bharucha | Times Of India The petition states the over a century-old gate, built by Pallonji Mistry and philanthropist Bhagojisheth Kheer in 1915, has been in existence before Marine Drive was built. “The gate is carved with Zoroastrian motifs and made of Malad stone with steps b...
Tags: Life, Mumbai, Bmc, Bombay, Arabian Sea, Marine Drive, Malad, Planning Authority, Environmental Impact Assessment EIA, Nauzer Bharucha, Mumbai Heritage Conservation Committee, Sukhadwala, Pallonji Mistry, Bhagojisheth Kheer, Chotta Chowpatty, Havovi Sukhadwala

India’s Parsi Community and the Making of Modern Iran: An Interview with Afshin Marashi

Afshin Marashi is Professor and Farzaneh Family Chair in Modern Iranian History at the University of Oklahoma, where from 2011 to 2020 he also served as the founding director of the Farzaneh Family Center for Iranian and Persian Gulf Studies. He is the author most recently of Exile and the Nation: The Parsi Community of India and the Making of Modern Iran (University of Texas Press, 2020). His previous books include Nationalizing Iran: Culture, Power, and the State, 1870-1940 (University of Wa...
Tags: Europe, Books, London, Life, La, India, Los Angeles, Iran, Paris, Tehran, Mumbai, Princeton, South Asia, Middle Eastern, Ucla, Bombay

Parsi Embroidery: A Heritage Of Humanity

With fewer than 55,000 individuals in India, Parsi Zoroastrians have carved a niche for themselves in the country. From leading industrialists like Ratan Tata and Godrej to an army of talented Bollywood actors, prodigal Parsis are an asset to India’s culture and economy. Article by Dr. Shernaz Cama | Edited by Jyoti Boken | Socio Martini While their lip-smacking food, unusual last names, stellar Bollywood movies, acting skills and the sweet mention of ‘dikra’ (well-behaved boy) are a part of Ind...
Tags: Europe, Fashion, Life, China, India, Iran, Unesco, Heritage, Shanghai, Pekin, Oprah Winfrey, Delhi, Hyderabad, Ratan Tata, Bombay, Gujarat

Bombay HC allows Parsis to pray for their dead on Farvardin Roj with restrictions

In a limited relief to members of the Bombay Parsi Panchayat (BPP), the Bombay high court has permitted them to hold prayer meetings at the Doongerwadi Tower of Silence at Kemps Corner on September 3 from 7 am to 4.30 pm on the occasion of Farvardin Roj. Article by K. A. Y Dodhiya | Hindustan Times The court has said that only six persons, not below the age of 10 years and not above the age of 65 years, would be permitted at a time to be present in each of the five prayer pavilions in the premis...
Tags: Life, Bombay, Hindustan Times, Shah, Mehta, Bombay Parsi Panchayat, BPP, Doongerwadi, Anil Singh, Farvardin, Viraf Mehta, Bombay Parsi Panchayat BPP, Ashutosh Kumbhakoni, Kemps Corner, Dhanuka, Farvardin Roj

Naoroji Rustomji Manek: This Surat Man Sued East India Co. & Won

He was the first Zoroastrian to sail to England from India; not to mention the first Indian who sued the British and won! He sailed back in victory with his cause vindica­ted and putting his entrepreneur skills upfront, he was received with great respect. Article by Ashleshaa Khurana Naoroji Rustomji Manek Seth (1662-1732) was the son of the philanthropic Parsi Rustomji Manekji of Surat, after whom Tapi town’s Rustompura area has been named. Upon the death of Rustomji, who was one of the chief ...
Tags: Europe, England, London, Life, India, History, Bombay, Salisbury, Company, Courtney, Wadi, East India company, Phipps, Surat, Willi, Nawab

High Court Tells Maharashtra Govt to Consider Parsi Petition for Farvardegan Prayers at Doongarwadi

Observing that both sides must be reasonable, the Bombay high court on Monday directed the Maharashtra government to consider a representation by the Bombay Parsi Punchayet to allow community members to hold the annual Farvardegan prayers for the dead on September 3 at Doongerwadi at Malabar Hill in Mumbai. Article by Rosy Sequeira | Times Of India A bench of justice Ramesh Dhanuka and justice Madhav Jamdar directed Amitabh Gupta, principal secretary (Home Department) and Kishor Nimbalkar, se...
Tags: Life, India, Mumbai, Bombay, Jain, Shah, Singh, Maharashtra, AG, Mehta, Home Department, Bombay Parsi Panchayat, BPP, Doongerwadi, Anil Singh, Malabar Hill

Kaiser-I-Hind: How an Anglo-Gujarati newspaper kept publishing through the Bombay plague and into the 1980s

Jehangir Patel, editor of the Parsi community magazine Parsiana, acquired the weekly Anglo-Gujarati newspaper Kaiser-i-Hind in the early 1980s. Along with it, he also got control of its hoary printing press. Located on Bazaar Gate Street in the Fort of Bombay, most of the printing equipment in the press was hopelessly outdated. At a time when offset presses were being commonly used for printing newspapers, the English text of the Kaiser-i-Hind was set using Linotype and Monotype machines, a tec...
Tags: News, Life, India, South Africa, Kaiser, Library Of Congress, Kashmir, Shimla, Bombay, Gujarat, Urdu, Gandhi, University of Manchester, Anglo, AINA, South India

At Last, a Biography of India’s Grand Old Man

Dinyar Patel’s splendidly researched, elegantly written book traces the life of a memorable pioneer. ‘A Parsee is no more a representative of Indians, than a Nestorian Christian would be of Ottomans.’ — The Spectator Dadabhai Naoroji, Dinyar Patel writes in this splendidly researched, elegantly written book, made at least two whistle-stop tours across most of India. Neither of these tours touched the South but there is no mistaking the fact that he was a respected figure across India. Revi...
Tags: Books, Congress, Life, India, US, Britain, Shanghai, Bulgaria, Westminster, South, Zanzibar, Bombay, Salisbury, Holborn, Calcutta, Muslim League

As Covid separates, Karachi’s Parsis grow closer with online Humbandagi prayers

Natasha Mavalvala is standing on the upper floor of the H. J. Behrana agiari in Karachi’s Saddar, singing hymns for the souls of the departed. Her audience is a camera, recording her recitations of the Humbandagi prayer. The hall, which used to be packed with Parsis, echoes with her solo voice. Article by Anushae Engineer | SAMAA The coronavirus pandemic has forced Parsis to turn to technology to conduct the annual communal prayers. Even with social distancing, as many Parsis are elderly, th...
Tags: News, Life, Earth, Bombay, KARACHI, Patel, Navroze, Tushna Patel, Mavalvala, Ahura Mazda, Zarathustra, Gatha, Tushna, Saddar, BVS Parsi High School, Natasha Mavalvala

Parsis in Hong Kong: what’s the secret behind their growing population?

Twelve years ago, Homyar Nasirabadwala was working as an accountant in his hometown of Mumbai, India, when he came across a job advert in a Parsi magazine seeking a full-time dasturji, a Zoroastrian priest. Already ordained in doctrines dating back to antediluvian Persia that influenced essential principles of Judaism and Christianity, Nasirabadwala figured it might be time for a change, so after 11 years of number-crunching service at Shapoorji Pallonji & Co, he applied online. Article by Rhea ...
Tags: Hong Kong, News, Congress, Life, China, India, Los Angeles, Bbc, Beijing, United States, New York Times, Paris, Hsbc, Shanghai, Jordan, Nigel

Everyday Parsi: The Tombstone Edition

On the last Gatha at the end of this Muktad period, I would like to share an #everydayParsi story of a different kind. While the last few authors have all shared their memories of muktad as “Everday Parsis” like you and me, today we remember the Everyday Parsis of yore who have passed away, some nearly two centuries ago. They lay in rest in faraway Parsi cemeteries. Their graves are not only a marker of their final resting place, but also a testament to the pioneerng Parsi spirit of our ancesto...
Tags: Hong Kong, Life, Macau, Bombay, LAHORE, Amritsar, LAHORE Pakistan, Parsi, Gujarati, Ashem Vohu, Gatha, Parsi Cemetery, Yatha Ahu Vairyo, Rustomji, Garothman Behest, Everyday Parsi

Everyday Parsi: Mehbad Dastur

Our eighth author in the Everyday Parsi 2020 series is Ervad Mehbad Dastur of Toronto, Canada Mehbad writes…  I would like to bring to the attention of readers the significance of Muktad. Photographed below are my grandparents Ervad. Mahiyar Dinshawji Nalladaroo and my grandmother Bapaimai Mahiyar Nalladaroo. My grandfather was the Panthaki (head priest) of the Banaji Atash Behram in Bombay, India which he took care for so for many years. As I grew up in Bombay, I was a very m...
Tags: Life, India, Toronto, Canada, Bombay, Nahan, Bombay India, Bapaiji, Dadar Parsi Colony, Fali, Gatha, Panthaki, Yatha Ahu Vairyo, Behram, Rustomji, Banaji Atash Behram

The World’s Best Hope for Enough Covid-19 Vaccine Comes from India

▲ Adar Poonawalla, CEO of the Serum Institute, and his wife, Natasha, at their ranch in Pune, India. Photographer: Subhash Sharma for Bloomberg Businessweek The Serum Institute of India is preparing to crank out a billion doses. And that’s just the beginning. By Ari Altstedter | Bloomberg As chief executive officer of the Serum Institute of India, the largest manufacturer of vaccines in the world, Adar Poonawalla can produce about 1.5 billion doses a year of almost any inoculation. He has ma...
Tags: Europe, Medicine, France, Life, India, Narendra Modi, Bloomberg, Paris, Oxford, West Africa, World Health Organization, Astrazeneca, Airbus, Bloomberg Businessweek, Michelin, University of Oxford

Everyday Parsi: Nazneen Thanawalla Spliedt

Our seventh author in the Everyday Parsi 2020 series is Nazneen Thanawalla Spliedt of Northern California, United States Nazneen writes about her Muktad memories from Karachi Pakistan. My earliest memories of celebrating the Muktad Days in Karachi were as a young child, when my Maternal Uncle passed away and my Grandmother had his Muktads performed at home. With tables laid with fruits, flowers, divo, and every day some delicious food prepared, we would remember the souls of the depar...
Tags: Hong Kong, Life, Pakistan, North America, Bombay, Curacao, KARACHI, KARACHI Pakistan, Parsi, Anklesaria, Nazneen, Ehler, Everyday Parsi, Nazneen Thanawalla Spliedt, Northern California United States, Hama Anjuman Muktad Hambandagi

Everyday Parsi: Ervad Zarrir Bhandara

Our fifth author in the Everyday Parsi 2020 series is Ervad Zarrir Bhandara of Los Angeles, California, USA Ervad Zarrir writes… The 10 days of Shehenshahi Muktad begins this Thursday August 6th 2020, Roj Aastaad Maah  Asfandaard YZ 1389, with 5 Hamaspathmaidhyem Gahambaar and Gatha days beginning  August 11th Tuesday and Navroze (New-Year) on August 16th Sunday. As I go down memory lane, I’m taken back to 1973, when I performed my first Muktad prayers and even before that time, when I...
Tags: California, Life, Marine, Bombay, Maharashtra, Soli, Adil, Andheri, Atash Behram, Anjuman, Dasturji, Doongerwadi, Ashish, Southern CA, Nariman, Gatha

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