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Welcome to Khoja Wiki

What is Khojawiki?

We are a not for profit collaborative, endeavoring to systematically record living peoples' own experiences and their recollection of the stories of their parents and other ancestors in their own words using the reach of the Internet.

We strongly believe, (as many Khojas do), that the remarkable 700 year migratory history of their entrepreneurial families from the Western Gujarat region of India to the rest of the world, should not be lost, due to the passing on of our elders.

The Khoja Migrations 15th-21st century

The Khoja are recognised by historians and other scholars as a distinct socio-cultural group with their own written script of Khojki, and have been able preserve spoken and written Kutchi and Gujarati.They have also managed to retain their rich literature, poetry/song (Ginans and Geets) and dance (Raas). Furthermore, they have proudly maintained, over centuries, a unique personal naming tradition that reinforces their syncretic Indian sub-continental identity.

Khojas have an unbroken history of mercantilism and migration that dates back to the 14th/15th century, firstly as petty traders in Multan and Sindh, and later. with the conquest of Kutch and Kathiawar in the late 1600's by thier Hindu rulers, progressing to become shopkeepers and vendors. After this period, with the expansion of the British imperial domain within India, in Africa, and other parts of Asia, many ventured out as itinerant and product traders, continental/transcontinental merchants and industrialists. This, in turn, spawned the ongoing diaspora of the Khojas throughout the world, where they currently reside and thrive as businessmen and professionals.

This long history of migration and transition is made up of thousands of very rich personal stories of courage, sacrifice, strongly-held family values, woven together with a fine tradition of public service or "sewa".These individual family histories and stories, combine together, to create the collective record of the Khoja story or a 'peoples history', over time. It is not only a story that is a rare treasure for future generations of Khoja families (and the Khoja as an Indic 'jat') but also, for society as a whole.

As a result of multiple migrations, in many families, the traditional method of passing down ancestral information has been lost, leading to a 'broken' collective memory. As more of our elders pass away, they take with them important links to our complex identity - the important questions posed by our children and friends such as who are we? and how did we get here? Khojas colloquially claim that business (or 'vyepar') is in their DNA. If this is true, how did we get here? These questions demand answers. We all know that sinking feeling, of time running out,with our invaluable family stories and the collective history of the Khojas being lost forever.

Recently a well-known Dutch historian Gijsbert G. Oonk, in explaining how his professor persuaded him to write about Indians in East Africa said:

"He encouraged me to write a history from below or, more specifically, a history of people without history."

These unintentional, but deeply disturbing words, have spurred our volunteers in our efforts, to record and memorialise the rich history of our ancestors-the Khojas of Western India, through the the Khoja Oral Family History Project and the Khojawiki portal.

Iqbal I. Dewji, Founder/Editor

Some statistics

It is Monday, October 3, 2022 and KhojaWiki.org currently has over 360 personal histories and 60,715 names on our community tree.

See full list here

Featured Content

Some brilliant stories created by our contributors and carefully picked by our editors.

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Personal Histories

Consult the index of over 350 personal histories.

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Volunteers and Supporters

We Wish to Honour Some of Our Dedicated Volunteers & Supporters Every Week. You make Khoja Wiki possible!

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Write Your Story – Make Our History

Check your family member name in our 25,000 plus database. Register as a User and add your family histories!

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Some Remarkable Women in our History
Khoja migratory history has produced some strong women. Their life stories have been translated into Gujarati so you can share with your elders-ગુજરાતીમાં અનુવાદિત - તેથી તમે વડીલો સાથે શેર કરો

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Khojawiki News

Khojawiki is an Associate Producer "TUG OF WAR".

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Featured content

Featured Prominent Personality
Currimbhoy Photo 2.png

Sir Currimbhoy Ibrahim, 1st Baronet

Among those who contributed to India's present position as a formidable industrial power were the business titans of the nineteenth century, who despite the constraints of British colonial rule, managed to create huge commercial and industrial conglomerates that outdid those of their masters.

These days, we are familiar with the Tatas and Birlas but it was the early textile magnets with their 136 mills between 1856 and 1900, who gave India its export economy. There were at least seven Khoja mill owners among them, of whom the most successful entrepreneur and renowned philanthropist was Sir Currimbhoy Ebrahim, who went on to be made the first and only Khoja Baron (Lord) from India, (the only other being Lord Amir Bhatia of Hampton) with a grant of lands recognized by the British Crown and a hereditary title that has remained in his family since..

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From Our History

Earliest Portuguese Historical Reference To Khoja Merchants

1543 AD

Check it out here!!! Khoja Shams-ud-din Gillani
Featured Essay
Quedagh Merchant vessel.jpg

The Quedagh Merchant

17th Century ships built by Indians in Surat"

A wealthy Khoja merchant from Surat, whose ship, the "Quedagh Merchant" was captured by Captain William Kidd, the notorious British pirate and for which Capt. Kidd was hanged 300 years ago!

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Personal Histories

Index of over 350 personal histories.
Each is unique and most contain fascinating stories of migration and settlement of the Khojas.
Person
Abdul Aziz
Abdulali Esmail Somji
Abdulhussein Peera Dewjee
Abdulla Jetha
Abdulla Pirmohamed
Abdulla Shariff Kanji
Abdullah Hashim Gangji
Abdullah Ibrahim Rahimtoola
Abdullah Jaffer Lakhpati
Abdallah Ratansi
Abdulrasul Alibhai Kassim-Lakha
Abdulrasul Allidina Visram
Abdulrasul Fazal Moloo
Abdulrub Peera Dewjee
Abualy Alibhai Aziz
Adam Adu
Adam Akberali
AG Abdulhussein
Ahmed Devji
Ahmed Ibrahim Rahimtoola
Ahmedali Nizari
Akber Maherali Sorathia
Akberbhai Makhani
Akberali Fazal Ismail
Akberali Merali Jiwa
Akberali Merali Jiwa
Al Noor Kassum
Alarakhia Dossani
Alarakhia Kheraj
Alimohamed Chunara
Ali Sachoo
Ali Visram
Alibhai Gulamhusein Jiwani
Alibhai Hasham Jeraj
Alibhai Hasham Rawji
Alibhai Lalji Kara Abhwani
Alibhai Nanji
Alibhai Thawer
Alidina Asani
Alidina Kanji Ramji
Alidina Kanji Ramji
Alimohomed Jessa Bhaloo
Alladina Giga Patney
Allidina Visram
Allu Visram
Alnashir Hasham
Alnoor Hassanali Karim Abdulla
Alyque Padamsee
Ameerali R Jumabhoy
Amersi Manji Lakhani
Amil Issa Shivji
Amil Issa Shivji
Amin Kassam
Aminbhai Nazerali Abhwani
Amir Habib Jamal
Amir Husein Kheraj
Amirali Bhatia
Amirali Karmali Mukwano
Anverali Aziz Charania
Arif Virani
Assa Danidina
Azim Premji
Aziz Charania
Aziz Hashim
Aziz Khaki
Aziz Tejpar
Badru G. Moosa
Badrudin Hassam Satchu
Bud Sayany
Badrudin P.V. Rajani
Ben Kingsley
Bhanji Jiwa
Bhimji Hamir
Cassum J. Rahimtoola
Currimbhoy Ebrahim
Dahya Punja
Datardina Wandani
Datoo Meru
Dolly Bhanji
Dewjee Parpia
Dewji Jamal
Dhalla Walji
Dhanji Jadavji Bhatia
Dharamshi Hasham
Dharamsi Khatau
Dolatkhanu Alibhai Jiwani
Dossa Thawer
Eboo Pirbhai
Ebrahim HAJI
Ebrahim Jamal Pradhan
Ebrahim Pabaney
Esmail Jetha
Faisal Devji
Fakirmohamed Gaidher
Fatma Peera Dewjee
Fatmabai Kassamali Bhatia
Fazal Ibrahim Rahimtoola
Fazal Master
Fazal Khamis Valli Nathu
Fazalbhoy Currimbhoy Ebrahim
Firoz Goa
Firoz Shroff
Firoze Madatally Manji
GhulamHussain M. Dharas
GhulamHussain M. Jindani
Gulamali Jina Madhavji
Gulamhusein Khamis Valli
Gulamhusein Moloo Hirji
Gulamhusein Rajpar Ladak
Gulamhussein Abdulrasul Dhalla
Gulamhussein Bhaloo Kurji
Gulamhussein Mohamed Meghji
Gulamhussein Moledina Bhimani
Gulamhussein Dedhar
Gulamhussein Remtulla
Gulsaker Dewji
Gulu Ramji
Habib Adat Dewji
Habib Ibrahim Rahimtoola
Habib Mawji Nathani
Habib R.Lalani
Haider Hasham
Haider Pirbhai Jetha
Haji Dada
Haji Dharamsi Khatau
Haji Ladak
Haji Musa Alana
Hasanaly Currimbhoy Ibrahim
Hasham Jamal Pradhan
Hasham Jessa
Hashum J. Rahimtoola
Hassan Bhanji Jiwa
Hassan Kassim Lakha
Hassanali Abdulla Chagpar
Hassanali Gulamhusein Khaki
Hassanali Juma
Hassanali Moloo Alarkhia
Hassanali Nanji Balolia
Hassanali Nanji Giga
Hassanali Nasser Thaver
Hassanali Walji Kanji
Hoosenaly Rahimtoola
Husein Alarakhia Kheraj
Husein Mohamedally Nazarally
Hussein Alibhai Mullani
Hussein Jaffer Bhimji Colombowalla
Hussein Walji Nayani
Ibrahim Hasham
Ibrahim Ladha
Ibrahim Lila
Ibrahim Meru
Ibrahim Nathoo
Sir Ibrahim Rahimtoola
Ibrahim Suleman Haji
Iqbal Gilani
Ismail Bhallo
Ismail Gangji
Ismail H Ebrahim
Ismail Jaffer Somji
Ismail Kassmani
Ismail Mohamed Dewji
Ismail Rahimtulla Walji Hirji
Ismail Ranmal
Issa Gulamhussein Shivji
Issa Gulamhussein Shivji
Issa Kassam Abji
Jadavji Walji Bhatia
Jaffar Ahmed Nizari
Jaffer Bhimji
Jaffer Daya
Jaffer Padamsee
Jaffer Rahimtoola
Jaffer Remtalla
Jaffer Somji
Jaffer Thawer
Jafferali Ali Meghji
Jafferali Dhanji Suleman
Jafferbhoy Gangji
Jamal Bhanji Jiwa
Jamal Pradhan- Kisumu
Janmohamed Hansraj
Janmohammed Bhanji Jiwa
Jeraj Shariff
Jina Madhavji
Jivraj Khatau
Jiwan Lalji Velji
John Shamsudin Karmali
Juma Bhagat Ismail
Juma Haji
Juma Lalji Ladha
Kabir Jivraj
Kabir Merali Jiwa
Kaderbhoy Adam
Kamrudin Hasham Jessa
Kamrudin Jeraj Shariff
Kanji Jetha Lala
Kara Ruda
Kara Samji Abhwani
Karamali Dahya Walji
Karim Jamal
Karim Moledina Pirani
Kassam Abji
Kassam Dewji
Kassam Haji
Kassam Rawji Mullani
Kassamali Hirji Jessani
Kassamali Paroo
Khaki Shivji Karachiwalla
Khamisa Devraj
Khoja Shams-ud-din Gillani
Kulsum Abdulrasul Wazir
Kulsumbai Abdulla Hasham
Kurban Dewji of Kurban & Party
Labai Vellani
Ladha Mawji
Lalji Kara Abhwani|
Lalji Ladha Sumar
Lalji Ladha
Laljibhai Devraj
Madatali Rehmtulla Nanji
Madatally Manji
Madhavjee Jessani
Maherali Gokal Versi
Maheroon Mawji
Mamda Kassam
Manbai Rahimtoola
Manji Ghulamhussian Padamsee
Mansoor Ladha
Maqbool Habib Rahimtoola
Mehboob Dewji
Mehboob Madhavjee Jessani
Mehboob Madhavjee Jessani
Mehdi Bawa
Mithibai Habib Dewji
Mohamed Dewji Bhagat
Mohamed H. Ahamed Sumar
Mohamed Hamir
MohamedJaffer R. Hansraj
Mohamed Khalfan
Mohamed Manek
Mohamed Nanji Nathani
Mohamed Suleman Zanzibar
Mohamed-Jaffer Habib Bhayani
Mohamedali Natha Hirji
Mohamedali Pirbhai
Mohamedali Rahemtulla
Mohamedali Suleman Meghji
Mohamedally Nazarally
Mohamedally Rattansi
MohamedHussein Karim Gaidher
Mohammad Rahimtoola
Mohammed Gulam Dewji
Moloobhai Alarakhia Dossani
Muhammad (Mohomedali) Jinnah
Muhammad Husayn Tharia Topan
Muhammad Muradali Juma
Muhammed Hashim Premji
Mumtaz Akberali
Murabbi Shariff Jiwa Surti
Murad Rajabali Velshi
Musa Mzuri Kanji
Mussa Jetha
Mussabhai Ismat
Naaz Bandali
Nadiya Mohemedali Mandani
Naheed Nenshi
Najarali Mohmedali Pattni
Najmudin Kassam Dewji
Nargis Ali Ashgar Hamadanee
Nargis Dhanji Bhatia
Nasser Lila
Nasser Noormohamed
Nasser Virji
Natha Hirji
Naushad Noorali Merali
Nazaralli Remtulla
Nazerali Dewji
Nazerali Lalji Abhwani
Nazir Nensi
Nensi Parpia
Nizar (Nizoo) Ismail Munjee
Noor Nagji
Nooruddin Mohammed Rahimtoola
Nurbanu Gulamhussein Moledina
Nurdin Merali Jiwa
Nurmohamed Jeraj Shariff
P Dossa
Padamsee Viru
Parvez Vira
Peera Dewjee
Pira Khimji
Rahemtulla Walji Virji
Rahim Ajmudin Samnani
Rahimtoola Kaderbhoy
Rahimtulla Walji Hirji
Rajabali Hasham Paroo
Rajabali Jumabhoy
Rajabali Meghji Visram
Mukhi Rajan Nanji
Mukhi Rajan Nanji
Ramji Ladha Mullani
Ramzan Hasham Jamal
Ramzanali Shariff Jamal
Rashid Adat Dewji
Rashid Kassam Nanji
Ratansi Alwani
Razia Gulmohamad
Razia Nathani Suleman
Rehmat Bai Ratansi
Rishad Azim Premji
Rosy Kassam
Rozina Visram
Sachedina Peermohammed Mawji
Sadru Kassam
Sadrudin Hasham Ramji
Sadrudin Rajabali Meghji
Safder Shariff Alladina
Sakar Kassamali Jessani
Saleem Kassum
Salim Bhanji
Samji Kanji Asani
Saukat Dhanani
Sewa Haji Paroo
Shamshu Alidina
Shamshu Bhanji Jiwa
Shariff Jiwa Surti
Sherali Bandali Jaffer
Sherali Jaffer Bhimani
Sherali Thaver
Sherbanu G.Jina Madhavji
Shiraz Sumar
Somji Chaggan
Somji Khakhuani Mawji Bhimani
Sugra Allidina Visram
Suleman J. Rahimtoola
Suleman Versi
Sultan Habib Kassam Dewji
Sultan Kamrudin Jessa
Sir Tharia Topan
U Kan Gyi
Valabhai M Nazarali
Walji Kanji
Yasmeen Azim Premji
Yasmin Ajijbai Mithwani
Yasmin Alibhai-Brown
Yasmin Ratansi
Yusuf A. Karim
Zainub Verjee
Zarina Mohamed Khimji Punjani
Zehra Jaffer Gulamali
Zerakhanu Dhanji Bhatia
Zerakhanu R.F.Alidina
Zubeida Sultan Chinoy
Zulfikar Amirali H.Juma

Volunteers and Supporters

We Wish to Honour Some of Our Dedicated Volunteers & Supporters Every Week.
  1. Karim Jivraj of London for research into UK colonial archives.
  2. Riyaz Adat of Sharon for helping with review & editing.
  3. Shamshtabrez Dhirani of Edmonton for his help in circulating our emails;
  4. Naren Valabh Kanji Varambhia of London, UK for his generous help with Gujarati;
  5. Mohammed Rahimtoola of Karachi for his continued support;
  6. Mohamed Mullani of Toronto with his donation;
  7. Zeenat Shariff of Toronto for her effort as a coordinator;
  8. Dr. Hasnain Walji of MARC for his encouragement;
  9. Sultan Somjee of Vancouver for his constant encouragement.
  10. Nazir Hirji of Calgary for his support with East African Cricket Fraternity.
  11. Raza Kara of Toronto for his support with East African Cricket Fraternity.
  12. Mahmood Jaffer of Minnesota for his contributions.
Our Volunteers Need Your Encouragement

Contact Us Here

Write Your Story – Make Our History

Check Your Family Member Here

Please check various spelling etc. to avoid duplication.

Become a member

To prevent abuse, we request that you contact us if you wish to be registered as a user and to be able to add information about your family.

Request user account

Contribute

Once you receive your username and password and have logged in, please follow this instruction to add content.

How to add content?

Ask for help

Alternatively, just fill this simple Google form and we'll be happy to enter the information about your family to Khojawiki for you!

I prefer to fill a form

Some Remarkable Women

Click on the photos to read the life stories of these remarkable women!

ગુજરાતીમાં અનુવાદિત - તેથી તમે વડીલો સાથે શેર કરો

Now translated into Gujarati so you can share with your elders!

In the News

Khojas and the English 1700's-1900's 'Pirates,City-Building and the Railways'

Mr. Iqbal I. Dewji was invited to make a Zoom presentation on the above subject on Sunday, January 30, 2022.

We are pleased to provide a video of his talk:

'TUG OF WAR'(Khojawiki-Associate Producers) wins more awards.

FESPACO - Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso - "the Oumarou Ganda award for best first or second feature film."

MASHARIKI AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL, Kigali, Rwanda - “For the great achievement in a film adaptation of a historical novel that features little-known African heroes. For the particular artistic level through the mastery of all the components of cinematographic language: image, music, costumes, sets and acting.”

VUTA N’KUVUTE ZANZIBAR PREMIERE, A HOMECOMING - "The ripples of silence, laughter and joy throughout the night were an outcome of the efforts of a community that collectively contributed to giving back a piece of their own literature, forgotten history; in the hopes of giving new generations a glimpse into their past"

Political & social dignitaries, including Vice President, Zanzibar with the cast & crew on stage in front of 1200 people at the screening in December 2021
Political & social dignitaries, including Vice President, Zanzibar with the cast & crew on stage in front of 1200 people at the screening in December 2021
KHOJAWIKI SECURES A TREASURE – TROVE OF GERMAN COLONIAL RECORDS OF KHOJAS IN TANZANIA.

During a recent visit to the German National Archives in Koblenz, we discovered some recently digitized records from Tanzania - a couple of very detailed German Colonial Handbooks dated 1903-1904-and 1908.

From those, our volunteers have painstakingly extracted all recorded Khoja family names & details and added them on to the Khojawiki website database.

This is a valuable find- thousands of Khojas from Tanzania can now find confirmation of their family oral history...of their great-grandparents and trace them to various towns and villages of their first settlement, including the Dukas and other businesses they established. We have names and business details from centers like Morogoro, Kilosa, Bagamoyo, Dar es Salaam, Pangani, etc. and also from small “bush” settlements like Magalla, etc.

All the towns and names are listed underneath and the detailed information for each ancestor is up-loaded on the Khojawiki database. Please check your family name on the general search engine above to see if your ancestor has been recorded.

Once again, we at Khojawiki are very proud of our volunteers who are trying to preserve our family heritage so our grandchildren can know their real past.

Search here, and then insert name in the main search engine in the left column

Khojawiki At The Second Khoja Studies Conference, Mumbai University 2019

Mr. Iqbal I. Dewji, Director of the Khoja Oral Family History Documentation Project was invited to speak to a conference at Mumbai University that included, amongst many other scholars, the Directors of the two very prestigious academic institutions engaged in Khoja Studies-The School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS) of the University of Paris and the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London.

Mr. Dewji's presentation was on the subject of "Crowd-sourcing And Wiki Initiatives In History Preservation."

We are pleased to provide a video of his talk:

Khojawiki Teams Up To Bring You A Useful Service.

A constant complaint in the West is that children do not understand grandparents when they speak Kutchi language. Valuable opportunities for transmitting knowledge, history or just family interaction are lost.

Whilst it may be hard to learn a whole new language, Alykhan Kaba has a solution - a web-based translator app that will help you with over several thousand words. It's free and run by a not-for-profit organization.

http://www.kutchilanguageonline.org is an open website where you can translate almost all words that we commonly encounter in Kutchi. It provides English to Kutchi and reverse.

Try it. Surprise Nanimaa. It will be fun and it will heartwarming.

KHOJAWIKI TORONTO DROP-IN CENTRE CLOSED DURING THE PANDEMIC:

Sadly, we wish to let you know that the Khojawiki Drop-In Centre is currently closed in order to reduce the risk to our seniors - we continue to receive mail. Please send your written materials at the following address:

Our complete contact:

KHOJAWIKI, c/o 6 Garamond Court, Suite 254, Don Mills, Ontario, Canada, M3C 1Z5

email: contact@khojawiki.org

Or contact us here.

Past News