Honouring Lives Lived

By Malik Merchant

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Please read the latest version of this post by clicking on Simerg Invites Obituaries / Tributes to Honour Past / Recent Deceased Ismailis

See details below for Simerg’s new initiative. Top portion of image shows plaque commemorating Ismailis who were killed in a WWII raid in Burma. Bottom half is a surreal image by Sarite Sanders of Aswan’s Fatimid cemetery.

Simerg offers to all its Ismaili readers around the world an opportunity to submit memorials to honour and celebrate the lives of beloved members of their families who have physically departed this world. The memorials may be submitted in the form of (1) a simple short notice or (2) a tribute of up to 500 words.

Substance of the Notice and Tribute

1. The simplest kind of tribute is a notice about the passing of the person. The notice will contain some information about the who, when, and where of a person’s death. It may be one paragraph, which includes the name of the parents or spouse(s) of the deceased, the children of the deceased, sibling or close relatives of the deceased, place of residence, the Jamatkhana or funeral home where the last rites were carried out and where the deceased was finally laid to rest. This short notice may be followed by a longer tribute at a later date as described in (2) below. The following is an example of a notice:

“[Name of Deceased], author and playwright, died peacefully at home in [city], on [date]. He was the much-loved husband of [spouse name], father of [children], guardian and grandfather. The last rites were held in [name of Jamatkhana] on [date] and he was later buried on [date] at [name and city of cemetery]. Post funeral religious ceremonies were conducted at [name of Jamatkhana]. It was the wish [of the deceased or the deceased family] that monetary contributions in his honour be made to [organization, hospital, cause etc.].”

2. The purpose of the tribute will be to celebrate the person’s life. It will start with the same basic information you put in the notice (1, above), and goes on to add details about the person’s life: hometowns, jobs, family members, and personal interests and activities. Anecdotes may be included from the person’s life to help family members, readers and future generations to reflect on the life of the individual. The universal tale, as is well-known, lies in specific examples and for this reason we are inviting you to write a tribute of up to 500 words in length.

For examples of short notices and tributes please see your local newspaper, or click The Globe and Mail. These newspaper links as well as What to Write will assist you in constructing appropriate notices and tributes.

The notice or tribute may be for any Ismaili person who has passed away recently or at any time since 1950 (or even earlier).

Each submission must specify your relationship with the deceased person, as well as include your full name, mailing address and the phone number where you may be contacted. Anonymous pieces will not be accepted for publication, although the editor may at his discretion allow author anonymity once the tribute has been approved for publication. Please submit the notice or tribute as a PDF file or include it in your email message. The tribute should be in English.

Notices and tributes will appear on a cumulative basis, once a month (frequency is subject to change). They should be submitted to with the subject of the email reading “Celebrated life of [name of deceased].” There is no charge whatsoever for this new initiative being offered by Simerg. The editor will contact you with the draft copy once the notice or tribute has been finalized for publication. Along with your short notice or tribute, we ask you to submit the celebrated person’s photo. For tributes, we may accept two additional photos which have a direct relevance to the person’s life that you have described. Images should be in JPG format.

The 48th Ismaili Imam, Sir Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan (1877 -1957) said in his Memoirs that “life is a great and noble calling.” It is the life that was celebrated about which we are asking you to reflect and write about, in the form of a short notice or a longer tribute.

Thank you

Malik Merchant


Date posted: Saturday, August 18, 2012.
Last updated: April 11, 2020 (Link to new version of this post – please visit Simerg Invites Obituaries / Tributes to Honour Past / Recent Deceased Ismailis)


The editor welcomes tributes to the deceased. Please send them to Each submission must carry with it the contributor’s full name, address and phone number where he/she can be reached for authentication purposes. Anonymous submissions will not be acknowledged or replied to.

We welcome feedback/letters from our readers. Please use the LEAVE A REPLY box which appears below. Your feedback may be edited for length and brevity, and is subject to moderation. We are unable to acknowledge unpublished letters.

Please visit the Simerg Home page for links to articles posted most recently. For links to articles posted on this Web site since its launch in March 2009, please click  What’s New.

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5 thoughts on “Passings

  1. Izzat Munyeb was a quiet and dignified teacher and friend. In her qreat nature lay her greatness of thought and action. Izzat, you will be forever missed. May you rest in peace.

  2. Dear Malik
    An excellent idea of remembering our departed family members which also records their contributions and achievements to the Ismaili community as a whole.
    Best Wishes

  3. In my case, I have been missing a lot of target dates and have to finish the last draft of my late Father who wrote a shorter Memoirs about his life in India with his small family with his Mother, my Dadima having to bring up the three sons, the fourth one already in Africa then. He never thoght that it will appear on a website as it was merely for our own family. The current events have kept me away from finishing teh last couple of pages of translating this. Inshallah, things are not so devastating with another War looming over us right now. I intend to soon get on with the task begun!

  4. Ya Ali Madad Malik:
    This is interesting because I was just thinking of writing about my grandmother (Dadima). She was the daughter of the South African Ismaili pioneer, Jivan Keshavjee, was widowed at a very young age, a single mom, brought up my father, underwent numerous hardships and above all, it was through her that I developed a love of reading. Keep well and you are indeed a role model in terms of taking care of the elderly.
    Best wishes

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