Silk Road Travelogue: Karimabad, Hunza by Ali Karim with Photos

“This old town was restored and improved by the Aga Khan Foundation to provide clean drinking water, sewage system, and electricity with buried wires to all homes, in exchange for maintaining the exterior of the houses to the same look and feel as in the olden times. That way, the old town is preserved” — READ MORE

silk-roads_hunza_alikarim_2_35sPlease click on photo to read Karim’s piece on Karimabad, Hunza.

Date posted: February 13, 2017.

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Links to Silk Road Series:

Photo Essay: The Dargah of Nizamuddin Aulia and Its Basti Through the Lens of Muslim Harji

“The dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia is the unquestionable historic, religious, and geographic origin of the neighborhood, the reason it came into existence, and the reason it continues to draw visitors from the world over.” — Michael Snyder, Columbia Undergraduate Journal of South Asian Studies

PLEASE CLICK: The Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya

While walking deeper inside the basti, the bursting aroma of sandalwood agarbattis mingle with the smell of the city and the open courtyard of the dargah is gradually filled with men and women. The agarbattis and diyas brightens up the dark closure, with each person lighting up to 20 agarbattis at a particular time in order to get purified of the evil and to clean the air of the surrounding negativity. It is said that the saint’s powers can cure people from all the djinns and negativity surrounding their bodies and hence leave them purified. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright. Please click on image for story and photos.

While walking deeper inside the Nizamuddin basti, the bursting aroma of sandalwood agarbattis (incense) mingle with the smell of the city and the open courtyard of the dargah is gradually filled with men and women. The agarbattis and diyas brightens up the dark closure, with each person lighting up to 20 agarbattis at a particular time in order to get purified of the evil and to clean the air of the surrounding negativity. It is said that the saint’s powers can cure people from all the djinns and negativity surrounding their bodies and hence leave them purified. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright. Please click on image for story and photos.

Date posted: October 13, 2016.

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35 Historical and Rare Photos of His Highness the Aga Khan by “Papa Jaan” On One Image

Please click on the following image to zoom on an excellent PDF version of the photo

Please click on image to view PDF file. Copyright Simerg/Abdul M. Ismaily Family Collection.

Please click on image to view PDF file. Copyright Simerg/Abdul M. Ismaily Family Collection.

Simerg was thrilled and privileged to recently publish on its sister photoblog never-before-seen photos of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, which were captured by Abdul M. Ismaily (1926-1981) during Hazar Imam’s visits to Hunza, Uganda and Pakistan in the early 1960’s. The collection was provided for exclusive publication on Simerg by the family of the late “Papa Jaan,” through Muslim Harji of Montreal.

We pay a small tribute to the memory of “Papa Jaan” for his outstanding photos by presenting a PDF image (click image on top) which contains 35 images from more than fifty that appeared in the Hunza, Uganda and Pakistan pieces. First time visitors to this website as well as readers who may have overlooked one or more photo posts are invited to click on the following links:

Copyright. Simerg.

Date posted: February 23, 2016

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Remarkable Tales of Ismaili Women of Shimshal: Hussn Bibi and Her Journey to New Zealand

“When I was 15 there were 21 people living in the house and my friend Hasiet and I had to do all the weekly washing for the whole family, even in winter. It took all day and I got frost bite in my feet several times. My toes would turn black. We’d go down to the river and make a fire to heat the water. We used to burn our socks, trying to warm our toes by the fire” — Hussn Bibi

Tales of Ismaili Women of Shimshal: Hussn Bibi and Her Journey to New Zealand to Study English

Please click for Ismaili Women of Shimshal

“….The university recommended the Campbell Institute. When I went to see the Campbell directors they were intrigued by the notion of this woman [Hussn], this mountain farmer from Pakistan, coming to their school which mostly enrolled Korean and Chinese youths. The fees seemed astronomical to me, but my mother’s estate provided collateral, the Campbell Institute awarded a generous scholarship to Hussn, and Lynette, my companion on the first trip to Shimshal, sent one thousand pounds….” — Pam Henson, author of Women of Shimshal

Ismaili Women of Shimshal: Celebrations After a Difficult Trip and Other Fascinating Stories by Pam Henson

‘‘When I was 15 there were 21 people living in the house and my friend Hasiet and I had to do all the weekly washing for the whole  family, even in winter. It took all day and I got frost bite in my feet  several times. My toes would turn black. We’d go down to the river  and make a fire to heat the water. We used to burn our socks, trying  to warm our toes by the fire. It was hard to find enough money to  buy new ones with all those people in the house.’’ — Hussn Bibi

Tales of Ismaili Women of Shimshal: Eid Festivities, Celebrations after a Dangerous Trip, and Stories of a Health Worker and a Wood-Cutter

Please click for Ismaili Women of Shimshal, Part 2.

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Previous installment:
Remarkable Tales of Ismaili Women from Shimshal, a Remote Village in the Karakoram

Tales of Ismaili Women of Shimshal – a Remote Village in Pakistan by Pam Henson

“I don’t read or write but I am very interested in animal husbandry and I have always worked hard on the farm. It was my dream for my children to be educated so I worked hard and provided for their education…” — Guljon Bibi

Remarkable Tales of Ismaili Women from Shimshal, a Remote Village in the Karakoram

Please click for Women of Shimshal

This is a fascinating collection of autobiographical tales told by women from the Ismaili village of Shimshal, in the remote Karakoram mountains. On the eastern border of Pakistan, the women of Shimshal live peaceful lives of extreme hardship and good-humoured tolerance.