Gulshan and Pyarali Nanji: Toronto philanthropist couple gives back after gift of refuge – Healthzone.ca

Gulshan and Pyarali Nanji: Toronto philanthropist couple gives back after gift of refuge - Healthzone.caWere it not for former Canadian prime minister Pierre Trudeau airlifting thousands of South Asians out of Uganda in 1972 — after then-dictator Idi Amin called them “bloodsuckers” and gave 60,000 of them 90 days to leave — Pyarali and Gulshan Nanji and their four children would likely never have settled in Canada.

Since arriving in Canada along with the 7,000 South Asian Ugandans who fled Amin and eventually found refuge here, the Ismaili couple has given generous donations to hospitals in Montreal, where they first settled, and in Toronto.

via Toronto philanthropist couple gives back after gift of refuge – Healthzone.ca.

Author: ismailimail

Independent, civil society media featuring Ismaili Muslim community, inter and intra faith endeavors, achievements and humanitarian works.

One thought

  1. What a heart-warming story, almost the stuff of fairytales, when in fact it started as a nightmare, following a divine dream visited upon Uganda President Idi Amin Dada that he should take back his economy from the 60 thousand Indian-origin people living in his country. He said they were mere exploiters. Ninety days he gave us – us because I was there. Of the 60k, about 10k were Ugandan citizens, most of them Ismailis. Most were rendered stateless in bogus citizenship verification exercises. The Canadians swept in out of the blue and took away 6,292 of us on 31 charter flights. Of course we remember that as our magic moment and we want to give thanks to Canada. I used to know Mukhi Pyralibhai when we lived in Old Kampala in the 1950s. They are our distant cousins, although in those days such relationship was protected as close. They were by no means super-rich or even rich, quite likely a genuine shirt-on-his-back case. So how nice it is to see how their endeavours have been blessed by the up-above and that they want to give back. And there are 100 others all over the world. Today our wealth quite easily exceeds the total GDP of Uganda. In Uganda itself the one thousand people who have returned (100 never left) have a total wealth greater than that of all the 60k Asians at that time. No-one talks anymore, either there or here, of exploitation.
    I am writing a book about all that! Ugandan Asians: Then and Now, Here and There, We Conributed, We Contribute, forthcoming around mid-2011. Wouldn’t you want to contribute – an article, offer to pre-buy some copies?! It’s 666+ pages, so a wrist-buster. Block-buster? On verra, comme on dit a l’autre cote, n’est pas?

    Like

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