The Institute of Ismaili Studies – In Memoriam: Dr Karim K Janmohamed (1943-2015)

Institute of Ismaili Studies

Before retiring in 2003, Dr Janmohamed worked at The Institute of Ismaili Studies for seven years, having set up the IIS-ITREB Liaison Department, a forerunner to the Department of Community Relations, and laid the foundation for continuing education for ITREB staff and volunteers globally. In this role, he worked in close association with Dr Aziz Esmail, former Dean and Governor of the IIS, and a group of Ismaili scholars in developing an international curriculum which could be used for episodic training programmes for the Ismaili community worldwide. Following the development of the curriculum, he worked closely with the Department of Jamati Institutions at the Secretariat of His Highness The Aga Khan in setting up the International Training Programmes on which he also taught. And he further contributed to their evolution as a member of the Steering Committee for the International Training Programmes.

Late-DrKarimJanmohamed-IISDr Aziz Esmail had the following observation to make about Dr. Janmohamed following the sad news of his demise:

“Karim Janmohamed was a person of integrity who worked hard and with dedication to his chosen goals.  I first met him when he returned to Nairobi after completing his doctoral research in history in the USA and joined the History Department at Nairobi University where I had taken a position, a little earlier, as a lecturer in Philosophy and Religion.  For an East African Asian, the path Karim had taken was triply unfashionable.   East African Asians seldom opted for an academic career in those days; the few who did so were apt to study practical fields rather than the humanities; and while English history might have seemed just about intelligible as a subject of choice for a young Asian committed to the humanities, African history struck a decidedly anomalous chord.  It is not therefore surprising that the colleagues with whom Karim worked closely at the time, in that field, were all Africans, with some of whom he built (again unusually) close, personal friendships.

Karim thus had an individualist bent which remained, happily, an enduring trait in his character.   However, this did not prevent him from maintaining a connection to his roots in the Ismaili community, to which he devoted all his energies when he joined the IIS, applying to his duties the same assiduous dedication which he had previously exhibited in his research, teaching and editorial accomplishments.

Equally characteristic of him was an ever-ready sense of humour which made him a congenial colleague to the individuals with whom he worked and which he retained to the end.”

via The Institute of Ismaili Studies – In Memoriam: Dr Karim K Janmohamed (1943-2015).

Author: ismailimail

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