Looking for heirs of Mehraben S.H. Jhabwala

As you are aware our 94 years old organisation (All India Women’s Conference)  was established by Margaret Cousins, Sarojini Naidu, Kamaladevi Chattopadhya in 1927 with Maharani Chimnabai Gaekwad II, as the first President. We are  working for the Education, Emancipation, and Empowerment of Women and Children . We are doing  virtual presentation on the work done by our dynamic past Presidents for the Society and the Nation.. We have been helped in presenting the work of Mrs. Hilla Faridunji Rustumji and Smt. Mithan Lam.
Our 28th President  from 1966 to 68 was Smt. Mehraben S.H. Jhabwala , from  The Hermitage,10th Road Khar , Mumbai, 400 052.  She was instrumental in building a shelter home for distressed women , ” Bapnu Ghar” at our HO, which is being looked after very well   till now. Similarly she had major role to play in establishing the Kesarbai Bhimani Working Women`s Hostel , A Home Away from Home, on 12th Road, JVPD Scheme Mumbai 400 049. .Mumbai branch of AIWC has its office here.
We would be grateful to have your help in finding Mrs. Meharaben Jhabwala`s relative or close friend who can throw some light on her work ,her life . You can share his or her contact details so that we can be in touch.
Attached is a picture of Mrs. M S H Jhabwala and her team. The Treasurer  Mrs. Pramoda Gosalia was also from Mumbai.
Thank you very much.
Take care, be safe,


  • Thank you for sharing the information about the good work done by Parsi women

  • I have been neighbours to Ms jhabwala on 10th road and my 92 year old father has great memories of her. She was a regular visitor to my house and came home at 5pm every single day to meet my grandfather who was her good friend. For more you may contact me
    Jahnavi Pal

    • Hi Jahnavi ji. I have been searching about the Jhabwala family from quite some time. I need your help regarding this. If possible, can I contact you?

  • Interesting, I wonder if she was related to the famous author Ruth Prawer Jhabvala who’s husband was Cyrus Jhabvala. Actually, I did a quick search and Mehraben was Cyrus Jhabvala’s mother’s name and her husband’s name was Shavaksha H. Jhabvala (Cyrus’s father)… . That would that be what the “S.H in Mehraben’s middle name.

    On further sleuthing, Cyrus (was the son of Mehraben Jhabvala and S H Jhabvala. He was, “The dashing Parsi, [who Ruth married] who was the son of “S H Jhabvala, a prominent trade union leader in Bombay, went on to enrich her novels with his illustrations, and her life with his wit and charm.” Mehraban’s granddaughter Ava Jhabvala Wood is on Twitter (@Ava Jhabvala Wood) and her other granddaughters are Rehnana Jhabvala (a social worker in Ahmedabad) and Firoza Jhabvala, a musician. Voila!

    • It is a small world. She sent me a sari in 1969. I think I still have the letter and yes she was married to a brother of Cyrus; I’m trying to locate her son Firdaus.

  • Homai Anklesaria

    Very interesting. It’s such a small world really and goodness is never forgotten.

  • World is really small. It’s heart warming to read that the good work of our Parsi philanthropists has not gone in vain.

  • I am Firdaus Jhabvala (not Jhabwala), Mehraben’s grandson. I lived with her and Shiavax our grandfather at Hermitage for about 12 years before leaving for the US in early 1967. She was a great grandmother, MA (pronounced Em-A), and Shiavax, PA (pronounced P-A) was a super person in every way, a real pillar of the Labor and Independence movements, of which he founded the first. I had strangers unseating their friends to seat us in the Third Class compartments PA loved to travel in, after having dinner at a Parsi wedding where one of his students would be the father or the grandfather of the bride or groom. Morarji Desai, then Bombay State’s Chief Minister found out about our (Farrokh, my brother, and my) Navjote, and crashed uninvited into the celebration. I’m sure somewhere we have photos of it all. I was surprised and didn’t know what to do.

    • Firdaus, my grandmother Kamaladevi Chattopadhyaya and your grandmother were good friends. We visited them in Khar in the 60s, Mehraben came to our flat on Marine Drive frequently as well!
      She was the sweetest person and insisted on bringing me ribbons which she tied into my hair. Such fond memories. Do you know what she did during the Civil disobedience time? She was a firebrand!
      Nina Chattopadhyaya Menon

      • Unfortunately, my grandmother had her hands full with her 7 children while Shiavax, her husband, was being tried in the Meerut Conspiracy Case also known as S. H. Jhabwala and Others v’s Emperor, and jailed for his fiery speeches. You can read all about it here in points 189-199, if you haven’t so far:
        Allahabad High Court
        S.H. Jhabwala And Ors. vs Emperor on 3 August, 1933
        Equivalent citations: AIR 1933 All 690, 145 Ind Cas 481
        Yes, all of them spoke their mind and were totally unafraid of the British Government, and took its injustice in their grand stride, and converted it into Independence. That is why we have a Free India. They won it for us. The rest is only possible because of their greatness and selfless sacrifice. There are Indians who forget that, and we should remind them of it.

  • Karen Hager Murrell

    Firdaus, Please let me know how you are these days,

  • I am Rustom Fali Mehta and live in Boston. Mehra aunty was my paternal grandmother’s sister. She used to bisit my grandmother Goolbai mehta every Saturday. I remember her as a warm humorous person.

    • I remember Fali Uncle very well for his humor and positive attitude towards everybody and everything. His elder sisters included Gul and Pila. They were great aunts in every sense of the word, and entertained us boys to an endless round of chocolates and sweet biscuits and other goodies. A lift carried you up to where they lived in Colaba on the waterfront, and one time a big steamer went right by their window making a huge sound that startled all of us.


    Good Evening. I — Dipankar Sengupta, a DAVPublicSchool Teacher from MTPS Colony,DVC, Dist — Bankura,WestBengal conveying my Regards and BestWishes to Firdausji for giving so much golden information on his grandmother. Years ago I used to write on ” Roshni ” Journal. I also got info on Smt.Kamladevi Chattopadhyay.I request Firdausji for his What’sApp.No. and. Mrs.Nina Chattopadhyay Menon’s What’s App.No. Please do the needful.

    • I am sorry I didn’t visit this site until now. My tel in Montgomery, TX is 9368286180 and my email is jhabvalaf@ttdcllc.com. I remember Madam Kamladevi very well. She got along hugely with MA, my granny. She was also a highly influential person in the India that was just finding her first steps all on her own, and wise people were very necessary then as now. I can tell you all I know if you tell me where and when to pass over the info to you.

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